Following a bizarre transfer to Juventus that was all but done before it collapsed, and a brief spell back at Sampdoria for pre-season, the Patrik Schick saga has ended with the Czech prodigy signing for Roma.
While the 21-year-old forward only has one season of Serie A football under his belt, there’s every reason to expect him to be a success in the high pressure environment of the capital.
As a player, he performed beyond expectations with the Blucerchiati after coming in to little fanfare following a spell at Bohemians. Statistically, he had the best chance conversion rate in the league beyond only Gregoire Defrel as he became a real super sub for Marco Giampaolo.
Paired with the experience of Fabio Quagliarella, Schick was a real headache for opposition defenders as his pace, skill with the ball at his feet and confidence to take people on made him an unpredictable element for teams already worried about Quagliarella at centre-forward.
This could be mirrored at the Stadio Olimpico with Edin Dzeko still the first choice forward after bagging 29 goals in the 2016-17 season while Schick could start from a wider position out right. The Czech’s natural confidence and ability to cut onto his left from a position more traditionally occupied by a winger could make it very difficult for defences to get any real reference point on the Roma attack.
The Giallorossi are in a rebuilding phase as sporting director Monchi has allowed stars to leave and be replaced by prospects, therefore, Schick will get chances to play an important role that he likely wouldn’t have had at Juventus.
Eusebio Di Francesco should also in theory be an ideal mentor after his laudable feats in getting the most out of Sassuolo’s young players. Domenico Berardi flourished under the new Roma boss as a forward who is more notable for his dribbling and runs in behind. Schick has a similar style where his goals tend to come from runs beyond the defence before he gets a quick finish away or pulls off moments of pure inspiration.
An appearance off the bench against Genoa showed that the young Czech international isn’t fazed by pressure as he beat his man time and time again.
Ultimately, he’s a fun player to watch and that could really help at Roma. The club still has a strong core and fierce midfield base, Schick can be their flair player. With all of his potential, there’s no reason why the rangy striker can’t get people out of their seasons for many seasons at the Stadio Olimpico.