RomaPress – After months of mystery and speculation, Paulo Fonseca’s fate at Roma is getting closer to a resolution. The Portuguese tactician’s deal is two months away from expiring, but the Giallorossi have yet to extend a renewal offer to him.
Two weeks ago, General Director Tiago Pinto rejected the idea that Fonseca’s future in the Italian capital relied entirely on the tie against Ajax. However, despite publicly backing the manager, discussions have already taken place between the club and potential replacements.
Following their August takeover, The Friedkin Group, Roma’s owners, made it clear that the objective for this season is Champions League qualification. After a bright first half to their campaign, the capital club suffered a dismal run of form from February to early April, winning only four of their eleven league fixtures.
As a result, their Champions League aspirations now hinge on the incredibly tall task of winning the Europa League. And with Fonseca’s contract nearing expiration, Roma have reached the point where a decision must be made.
To date, Fonseca and his agent, Marco Abreu, haven’t received any proposal from Roma regarding a new contract — with all signs pointing to the Portuguese technician leaving in June.
Should this come to fruition, American owners Dan and Ryan Friedkin would be poised to make their first managerial appointment since their purchase of Roma nearly eight months ago.
The Friedkin’s, along with General Director Tiago Pinto, would lead the club’s search for a replacement. The group would cast a wide net in their search, however, two familiar names have cropped up in recent months: Maurizio Sarri and Massimiliano Allegri.
Rumors have swirled throughout the season about the pair and their interest in taking over at the club. But while it’s true that the duo interest Roma, a source from The Friedkin Group tells RomaPress that nothing has been decided. In addition, they denied the rumors that emerged last week, which claimed the club has already met on multiple occasions with Allegri.
When it comes to Sarri, though, the situation is different. Several discussions have already taken place between Roma and members of the Tuscan’s entourage. The first talks took place in January after the 62 year-old made it clear to his collaborators that Roma is at the top of his wishlist for his next coaching role.
His desire is to remain in Italy but at a large, ambitious club — criteria that Roma meets. It’s also part of the reason why he rejected approaches from both Marseille and Fiorentina in recent months.