Ranieri unveiled at Samp: “A nice twist of fate to debut against Roma”.

John Solano

Sampdoria unveiled former Roma boss Claudio Ranieri as their new manager today. Coincidentally, the 67 year-old will debut on the club’s bench this weekend against the Giallorossi — the same day as his birthday.

“Playing against Roma on my birthday is a nice twist of fate,” said Ranieri. “Obviously I will put my allegiances to Roma to one side when it comes to the match. May the best team win. Everyone knows that I’m a Roma fan, but I’ve always been fond of Sampdoria. I was happy after the Scudetto win and disappointed after Wembley – I was there. Sampdoria has always been a club I’ve liked and I’m honored to be here.”

Ranieri takes over for Eusebio Di Francesco as the Blucerchiati currently sit bottom of the Serie A table.

“We have to show our desire to fight and stay in Serie A,” he proclaimed. “I’m not here to develop young players or get the older heads back to their best: I’m here to save Sampdoria. When you have a club, a coach and a group of players capable of making the fans dream, that’s how fairy tales begin. I think it’s always important to dream, but first let’s take a step back. I’ve been brought in with the team in last position, but I know that’s not the true level of the side. We must give 100% on the pitch.

“I will pick 11 payers who want to battle – we’ll see about the system and the formation after that”.

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