Salmon returning to the site of their birth to spawn before dying. Swallows returning to Capistrano each spring. Canadian geese migrating south every winter. White people celebrating Cinco de Mayo. No matter where you look, we're surrounded by annual rites of passage, but when it comes to our favorite football club there is only one tradition that matters: the summer purge.
Financial Fair Play may have just been delivered a gut punch (or kick to the groin) by the Court of Arbitration for Sport—who essentially over-turned FFP's two-year European ban on Manchester City, ruling that there wasn't enough evidence to convict, as it were—but that won't stop Roma from shedding talent this summer. With the club's financial woes running deeper than FFP, we're staring another summer sell-off dead in the face.
You don't need me to run through Roma’s body count again (though it is awfully impressive), but I suppose it's a credit to Roma's scouting and developmental departments that they seemingly always have in-demand young talent. The two names teetering on the brink this summer are Nicolo Zaniolo and Lorenzo Pellegrini, two supremely talented attackers that have become pillars of a relatively young team.
While it's somewhat reassuring to hear each of them reaffirm their commitment to Roma, their wishes and wants ultimately don't matter; the imperative to sell may simply be too strong. But don't go out and purchase a PSG Pellegrini kit or a Spurs Zaniolo shirt just yet, there may be hope.
According to the Corriere dello Sport, Roma CEO Guido Fienga has a Plan B to save Roma's bacon: raise €90 million through a series of smaller deals, which would ideally roll out as follows:
Pawn off Patrik Schick to Red Bull Leipzig for approximately €25 million
Sell Justin Kluivert to Arsenal for approximately €22 to €25 million
Sell Cengiz Ünder to Napoli for approximately €30 to €35 million