Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Di Francesco wants five new Roma signings

SoccerNews in Serie A 10 Jul 2017

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New Roma coach Eusebio Di Francesco is keen to bring in five new faces ahead of the new Serie A season, while in-demand midfielder Radja Nainggolan will travel with the squad for a pre-season tour to the United States.

Nainggolan is reportedly a target for Premier League clubs Manchester United and Chelsea, with the Belgian potentially linking up with former Roma team-mate Antonio Rudiger, who completed his move to Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

But Roma have been adamant Nainggolan will stay at the club, with Di Francesco instead keen to add to his squad as Roma aim to end the six-year dominance of the Serie A title by Juventus.

“[Roma want] an alternative to Dzeko, two wingers, a left full-back and a central defender,” former Sassuolo boss Di Francesco told Sky Sports Italy.

“In midfield we have the right players, so we need to look at the other areas. It’s a great midfield and I’m happy to have them at my disposal.

“[Nainggolan] is a great player and one we want to have with us: it is my aim and that of the club and he will definitely be with us in the United States. I’m calm, the qualities he has are really important: he can play, he can tackle, he can attack and score goals. All qualities that a great midfielder needs to have.”

Roma are still awaiting a decision from club icon Francesco Totti on whether he will return to take an off-the-field role or prolong his professional career with a move away from Serie A.

Tokyo Verdy club president Hideyuki Hanyu has made the 40-year-old midfielder an offer to join the J2 League side, but Di Francesco is hoping Totti instead opt to go back to Roma.

“He has to make a decision, he is a legend and should decide his own future,” the coach said. “I know that Francesco can be a huge help to us and it will be a big bonus for us to have his wealth of knowledge with us.

“After being a player and a staff member, it is a great feeling to become the head coach of Roma. The warm welcome from everyone will help me take on this new challenge.”

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