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Official: Roma Signs Gianluca Mancini

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The young defender comes to the capital on an initial loan move.

Italy v Poland: Group A - 2019 UEFA U-21 Championship Photo by Marco Luzzani/Getty Images

While Roma aren’t moving at quite the same pace as last summer when they wrapped up several new purchases before the calendar even hit July, new Director of Sport Gianluca Petrachi has been working the phone and handing out scarves with fury over the past few days. After locking up Amadou Diawara and Pau Lopez earlier this month, Petrachi moved his attention towards the central defense, where, as he claimed, Roma needed two new faces to augment and/or compete with Federico Fazio and Juan Jesus.

And as we reported yesterday, Petrachi has landed the first of those faces, now former Atalanta defender and Italy international Gianluca Mancini, who just completed his medical examination a short while ago.

Mancini comes to Roma on an initial one-year loan, for which Roma will pay €2 million, with an additional and mandatory €13 million due in the near future, presumably by June 30th of next year. The deal also includes several performance bonuses that could escalate to a maximum of €8 million, pushing the total transaction to €23 million, while Atalanta retains a 10% cut of any future sale.

Upon signing the deal, which runs through 2024, Mancini spoke about his journey to this point:

Joining a prestigious club like Roma is a proud moment for me, and the culmination of all the hard work put in ever since I first started to play football. I cannot wait to get started on this new adventure.

Petrachi then spoke to the theme of the summer, youth:

The arrival of Gianluca allows us to boost our defensive options with a young defender that has great talent and is coming off a very impressive season,” said the club’s sporting director Gianluca Petrachi.

I am pleased that Paulo Fonseca will now have the chance to coach a young player who is dedicated to his work and has a great desire to improve further.

All in all, this is a pretty shrewd move from Petrachi, paying only two million upfront while deferring only €13 million to 2020 (and presumably at least a portion of the bonuses), but now the real work begins.

It's been several years since Roma has landed a central defender this young (at least one they intend on using...sorry, Bianda fans), so the manner in which they nurture his talents will obviously determine whether or not this was €23 million well spent. As it stands right now, you have to figure he's a day one starter, but if Roma lands another veteran to mix and match with Mancini and Fazio, some of the early pressure should ease.

But make no mistake, Mancini was purchased to be the bedrock of Roma's defense, a day that will likely come sooner rather than later, and with his size and bag of skills, Roma's defense seems in good hands.