Pallotta to BBC Radio: talks Strootman, strategies, Sabatini

Roma president James Pallotta gave an interview to BBC while attending the “Leaders in Football” conference in London. Here are his words:

“Kevin (Strootman) is not for sale. I’ve told the English press, ‘Guys, you should really stop wasting paper on the Strootman rumors. You’re damaging the environment.’ I don’t believe you should sell to improve financially, you should only let a player go if you get huge offers, the kind of offers that allows you to cover three or four slots in the squad”

“I personally don’t think that the club that spends the most money is necessarily the club that wins the most, it’s plenty of examples that say the opposite. You can battle on the pitch with economic powerhouses, if you use your resources properly.”

“Just look at Keita. We were lucky enough to have the guy willing to come to us, and we didn’t have to pay any transfer fee. And he’s just as good as any other of our current midfielders”

“You must not forget that we’re Roma. You can’t forget the city, it’s most inspirational city in the world.”

“Benatia is a different story. We got 30 million for Bayern, and we managed to get Manolas, who is just as good as him and 5 years younger. Manolas refused bigger offers from other clubs in Italy and England because he didn’t want anything but Roma”

“The hardest aspect of this new Roma adventure for Cole was actually learning Italian. But he’s improving, he talks in Italian on the pitch and does and Italian full-immersion during the rest of the day.

“Sabatini is one of the cornerstones of our project. He’s an amazing manager, we’re extremely lucky to have him. When he was about to renew his contract, he wanted to go for one year. I wanted to sign him for the next 3 years, and I made it clear. Walter couldn’t decide. At a certain point I went to him and said, ‘Look, if you don’t sign for three years, I’m sticking your head into the toilet.’ Eventually, he signed.”