Daniele De Rossi has reflected on how his first impression of Rudi Garcia was so different to the man he now ‘thanks God’ is at Roma.
The French tactician has overseen a complete turnaround in fortune at the Giallorossi this season, with the club sitting a comfortable second in the Serie A standings.
For their vice-captain, however, expectations in first hearing that Garcia had joined the club did not have him pumped.
“When I heard that Roma had signed Garcia, I searched the internet, it came out with a video in which he played the Porompompero with the guitar,” De Rossi has explained this week to So Foot.
“I was with the national team, I called Pirlo and told him: ‘Look at who we have brought in!’ Now I thank God that we got him.
“I do not know, I had some doubts. It seemed that we had chosen him because we had failed to sign Mazzarri or Allegri.
“We were thinking he was the fourth choice, I cursed when that video with the guitar came up.
“Now I thank God every day that we signed ‘Porompompero, he can be a turning point in the history of Roma. I’m not exaggerating, he can help us to win.”
Conversely, De Rossi was seen to have a lower opinion of Zdenek Zeman last season.
“I never disrespected him, but he did not see me as suited to his game. In the summer I would have been able to leave - if the offer from Manchester United had arrived earlier…”
The midfielder also considered the fans in the city of Rome, divided by loyalty to the Giallorossi or to Lazio.
“Lazio fans insult me ont eh field, but off it I have never been disrespected. If Rome only had one team, with our name of course, we would have the greatest fans in the world.
“Our fans are very attached to us, but it’s like a fire burning - if we lose the next three games 5-0, this love could turn against us.”
Check out OLBG.com 's list of ££ Free Bets from UK bookmakers before placing your bets!