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26th Jul 2018

Roma president says he will only accept Barcelona apology if they sell Messi

AS Roma were convinced they had a deal agreed with Malcom before Barcelona stole him out of their hands

Kyle Picknell

Roma president James Pollotta has blasted the Spanish club’s behaviour

Malcom got caught in the middle once again this week as the former Bordeaux winger signed for Barcelona on Tuesday for €41 million, despite already having a deal in place to join Italian side Roma.

On the day of the transfer Roma’s Sporting Director was unsurprisingly disappointed by the situation, claiming that all parties – agent, player and the selling club – had previously agreed on the Brazilian moving to Rome.

It is likely that after seeing their repeated efforts to sign Willian rebuffed by Chelsea, Barcelona were forced to suddenly turn their attention elsewhere to invest in cover for their attack. Therefore leading them to the just-about-available Malcom.

Unfortunately for them, Roma’s president James Pallotta is royally fucked off, and has set his asking price for complete forgiveness, well, astronomically high.

Are we going to ignore how weird the #EnjoyMalcom hashtag is? We are, aren’t we? We’re just going to brush over that.

Speaking on Sirius XM Radio on Thursday, Pallotta revealed that not only have Barcelona phoned him personally to apologise for their conduct, but that he told them the only way he would be accepting it is if they sent him Lionel Messi, presumably with a little red bow around his head.

Oh, and he also called Malcom’s agent a moron. There’s that too. It really is the interview that just keeps on giving.

“Malcom? Barcelona jumped into the mix, no question they did so unethically. Monchi was on a video conference the following morning with Malcom’s agent, who said, ‘Look Monchi, I’m wearing red, the deal is done.’ But we’ve gotten legal advice on the situation and it looks like Bordeaux will be testifying.

Even yesterday, Barcelona called us to apologise, but I don’t accept their apology. The only way I accept their apology is if they send us Messi.

Malcom wanted to come to us, there were other clubs interested such as Leicester and Everton but they weren’t having formal talks. We had already agreed to a buyout clause of €120 million. Nothing was signed? That’s bullshit. Every club knows how things work. Forget about the legality, it’s unethical and immoral. His agent? Maybe he’s a moron.”

During the portion of the interview in which he isn’t going in on Barcelona, Pallotta spoke a little bit about Roma’s over transfer activity this summer, comparing Justin Kluivert to Allen Iverson (“he’s like Allen Iverson with his feet’) and explaining the Alisson  by simply stating: “Let’s be serious, €70 million is a lot of money.”

He’s not wrong, but whether refusing to talk to Barcelona will earn him a gift wrapped Lionel Messi remains to be seen. You have to admire the ambition though.