Keita on Totti, Garcia, and more

Roma midfielder Seydou Keita spoke with La Gazzetta dello Sport today:

What do you make of the environment in Italy?
In Italy, the environment is more “fanatical” than in Spain. In Barcelona, ​​the temperature (of the fans) was much calmer than in Roma, I can’t even take a breathe! When the fans recognize me at a restaurant, they never let me pay for a bill. It doesn’t bother me, but I’m a quiet guy, private. I tell myself that when things go bad on the field that the music will change (referring to the good treatment he receives from fans), but you can not stop people from loving their team. I don’t expect much more from calcio, since I’m not 20 years old anymore.

What about Garcia?
He’s a nice person — he’s charismatic. He listens a lot and avoids treating the older guys like kids. He knows exactly how to talk to players like Totti.

Speaking of Totti…
He’s not a captain who yells and talks all the time, but he still has the soul of young guys who plays with everybody. What he’s done in 38 years is exceptional, I’d like to do the same.

What kind of group is it?
We are a united group. We communicate amongst ourselves with WhatsApp — it let’s us stay in touch, even if only to remind us about training times. We often find ourselves out eating together at the same table.

How is Pallotta?
When in the United States, he was very close to the team. He’s a great president, he’s accustomed to the role. This is demonstrated by the fact that after the game against Juve, he made ​​us realize that it was pointless to debate (about the refereeing) and that it was necessary to only think about the next match.

The Editor of, John has been covering Italian football as a freelance journalist for over 10 years and has appeared in various publications including,, and ESPN.