Ex-Roma sporting director Walter Sabatini talks Mourinho, Pallotta & more

Andy Mattioli

Former Roma sporting director Walter Sabatini – currently working at Salernitana – shared a lengthy interview to Corriere dello Sport about his past with the Giallorossi.

“I butted heads a lot with Pallotta but we spoke to each other. We stayed in touch. With him I was able to build a team that played some really great football,” said Sabatini when asked what his relationship with former president James Pallotta was like.

“Firing a coach is always painful, but sacking Garcia in 2016 was the worst. It was inevitable and the right thing to do, he had lost the locker room, and the team could not muster any enthusiasm anymore.”

“I always thought that had I hired Spalletti earlier on in that season we could have had a shot at the scudetto.”

On Dzeko to Inter, Sabatini shook his head and replied, “It’s horrible. I only think the best of him. I always wish him the best. The fans don’t seem to understand that the club had wanted to get rid of him for two or three years.”

“My time at Roma came to an end once Pallotta named Baldini as his personal consultant. You think a sporting director can tolerate such a decision?”

On whether he would make a good fit with Mourinho, Sabatini said, “Are you kidding me? Mourinho is a great actor, whereas I want to play real football. Of course, he’ll say he’s won twenty-five trophies or whatever, and he’s right. But that’s my answer.”

“He only fits a certain type of team, a certain type of project and objective. I look beyond Roma’s recent results and I see players that have been pushed to the margins, devalued. I think it’s all very questionable.”

“Roma is a difficult place. This is a work in progress and Mourinho will have analyzed the whole situation after this season. He’ll try to do better but that is certainly not happening with players of Oliveira’s caliber.”

Match Center

MatchDay 38
26 May 20:45