Club Focus – Roma – The De Rossi effect

You have to love Daniele De Rossi. No sooner have Roma caught Milan in second place in Serie A, then ‘Capitano Futuro’ is stating his belief that the Giallorossi can overhaul Inter’s lead and win lo Scudetto. Given the somewhat pessimistic disposition of many Roma fans, it is unlikely that too many share his beliefs – but we all want to. And this is the important point – De Rossi has enough belief for all of us. It does not matter that years of supporting Roma has told us that league victory is unlikely, that the clubs from the North always seem to triumph,, and that we have to be content with having Francesco Totti – the one thing they have all wanted but could never have, because De Rossi will believe for all of us, and if there is one man who can inspire Roma to victory, it is he.

More good news comes in the form of Philippe Mexès, who has once again pledged his future to la Magica in the wake of new speculation that he could leave the club in the summer, before consolidating that with a goal in the Coppa Italia victory over Udinese. Juventus are the latest club to be linked, and whilst there are, depressingly, precedents for Serie A sides selling their best players to la Vecchia Signora, Mexès is one player that has to stay in Rome. Looking past the fact that selling good players to Juve is hardly sound policy for a club with Scudetto ambitions, the Frenchman is the type of technically gifted centre-back that would be very hard, if not impossible, to replace. “I am settled here,” said the former Auxerre player. “I’ve said it before and we’ll see what happens. I want to stay. Of course, it does not depend on me.”

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One player that would do well to start performing for Roma if he has an ambition to remain at the club is Júlio Baptista. The Brazilian is another of the clichéd ‘enigmas’ in Italian football, a player that on his day can do wonderful things, but his good performances are becoming so rare that most people are left wondering whether they imagined his two goals in the derby, or amazing strikes against Sampdoria or Torino. ‘The Beast’ has been talking this week about his ambition to make the Seleção squad for the World Cup, claiming that he does not even fear for his place in the squad. He also said that he intends to work hard with Roma, but it is this lack of worry that may see him spend the second half of the season on the bench, dreaming of the summer.

Finally, it looks as if Claudio Ranieri is to be rewarded for the way that the side have played since his appointment with a new deal – reportedly until 2014. As well as Roma have been playing, they should look at Liverpool and the Rafa Benítez situation, and consider whether it might be safer to make the contract a little bit shorter. We all hope that Ranieri and Roma continue to thrive, but should something go wrong further down the line, it would be best not to have to pay the manager for years of a contract from which he has been fired.

Roma Club Focus 2009/10

Week 1


The senate is adjourned
– August 25, 2009

Week 2


Houston, we have a problem
– August 28, 2009


The time of Penelope
– September 1, 2009


Good move, bad timing
– September 4, 2009

International week (Georgia-Italy, Italy-Bulgaria)


Break means homework time for Ranieri
– September 7, 2009

Week 3


A win that means more than three points
– September 15, 2009

Week 4


Ranieri chases team spirit
– September 18, 2009


Champagne!
– September 22, 2009

Week 5


Children of Chaos
– September 25, 2009

Week 6


Catania is beginning to get on our nerves
– September 29, 2009


Ranieri has yet to stabilise i Lupi
– October 3, 2009

Week 7


A solid win at a heavy price?
– October 6, 2009


Rumours as IFFHS ranks the Giallorossi as best in Italy
– October 9, 2009

Week 8


The strange attractor of two inherently chaotic teams
– October 16, 2009


The sound and the fury
– October 20, 2009

Week 9


The importance of being Francesco
– October 23, 2009


A shot in the foot
– October 27, 2009

Week 10


Waiting for Godot (and the rest of our men)
– October 30, 2009

Week 11


Win as a team, die as individuals
– November 3, 2009

Week 12


Into the nest of snakes
– November 6, 2009


A promise of spring
– November 10, 2009

International week (Italy-Holland, Italy-Sweden)

Week 13


Purgatory is not enough
– November 20, 2009


The first leaves shiver
– November 24, 2009

Week 14


The ghost of a future derby
– November 27, 2009

Week 15


The front needs work but the back looks good
– December 1, 2009


The only game in town
– December 4, 2009


We need an alternative, fast
– December 8, 2009

Week 16


Black Wolves rising
– December 11, 2009


The Imbecile
– December 15, 2009

Week 17


Pass the Parmesan, please
– December 18, 2009


The defence does everything, where is the rest?
– December 22, 2009

Winter break


The man to give (us) a shove
– December 29, 2009


It’s quiet…too quiet
– January 5, 2010

Week 18


No offence intended
– January 8, 2010


All I know is a door into the dark
– January 12, 2010

Week 19


The halfway buoy
– January 15, 2010

Week 20


Standing ovation. Seriously
– January 19, 2010

Week 21


A song of ice and fire
– January 22, 2010


Marching upon the ashes of the fallen
– January 26, 2010

Week 22


The unfortunate tale of Stefano Okaka
– February 2, 2010

Week 23


The De Rossi effect
– February 5, 2010

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