Published On: Wed, Sep 4th, 2013

Spalletti: Roma look great thus far

Spalletti - ZenitZenit St. Petersburg manager Luciano Spalletti has stated that he’s pleased by what he’s seen from his old club Roma so far this season and claimed that he still holds the Giallorossi close to his heart.

The Lupi have now won their first two games of the season, and despite the big-name departures of Marquinhos, Pablo Daniel Osvaldo and Erik Lamela during the summer transfer window, Spalletti is optimistic about his former side’s fortunes in the year ahead.

The ex-Empoli technician was joined by Udinese captain Antonio Di Natale at the inauguration of a sports centre in Avane, a district of Florence, and gave his outlook on a number of football related manners while speaking to Sky Sport.

“To see that it has started so well is a great pleasure, and I will always be there to watch them with great emotion because I love Roma,” he said.

“[Director of football Walter] Sabatini has also done a good job this year, there were some important players who left, but he knew how to replace them impeccably.”

“Italian teams in the Champions League? They are all strong, they have shown it at the start of the season,” he continued.

“I watched Juventus, they are a team with a strong spirit, my compliments to [Antonio] Conte for the work he’s done, you can see that it’s a united squad that fights, and gives importance to whatever kind of situation, the crowd is very involved, the stadium has been renewed.

“They will probably have an important future in the Champions League also.”

Meanwhile, with the Bianconeri favourites to lift a third consecutive Scudetto this season, Spalletti gave his opinion on which team he thinks will be the real ‘anti-Juve’.

“Anti Juve? In my opinion it is AC Milan. Kaka is an intelligent person, when he sees that he can’t give his contribution to the team anymore it will be he who pulls himself out, he won’t be excluded.

“He will return to be the phenomenal player who showed great technique, speed and quality.”

Spalletti managed Roma between 2005 and 2009 and is now in his fifth season at the helm of Russian side Zenit St.Petersburg. VIP Lounge