AS Roma president James Pallotta has had plenty of practice denying transfer rumors this summer, and while he did end up losing Miralem Pjanic to Juventus — only so much he could do with a buyout clause in place — he's determined not to lose anyone else. Especially to Chelsea, it would seem, though obviously we care far less when he's quizzed about other teams' transfer targets.
So, after Radja Nainggolan and Antonio Rüdiger, Pallotta now gets to pour cold water on the Kostas Manolas transfer rumors as well.
"Why on earth should Manolas leave? Juan Jesus and Nacho are two experienced defenders who are going to help us. The team is working very hard for the Champions League play off stage."
-James Pallotta; source: Evening Standard
After leading everyone on a merry dance, the Nainggolan rumors disappeared and were replaced by an even better reality in N'Golo Kanté. Perhaps we'll see a similar development here, with the Manolas rumors eventually replaced by a Koulibaly reality. Of course, with Napoli supposedly standing firm on their ridiculous, €50m asking price, that may not materialize either. In which case Chelsea would have to go back to the drawing board. Or perhaps there's something already in the works in the background and we just haven't heard of it. Wouldn't be the first time.
One thing seems certain however, as per Antonio Conte's stated intent, we will wait and make sure to buy smartly, rather than panic into action for the sake of action.