Javier Pastore joined Roma this week arriving from PSG on a 24.7 Million Deal as the 29-Year Old returns to Italy. He intention was very clear he has come to Roma to win the league for the city as the club. He has spent time at the Roma store meeting fans and signings autographs and getting in touch with some Roma fans but prior to that he was introduced in front of the media. Monchi and Javier Pastore both answered questions upon the arrival of the Argentina International at the Stadio Olimpico.
Here are the highlights of Javier Pastore’s first Interview as a Roma player (ASRoma.com)
What were your reasons for picking Roma?
“It’s simple. This is a very strong team, which is growing a great deal. I’ve been speaking to Monchi for a couple of months now. It was an easy choice: this is a great team, a beautiful city, and I couldn’t wait to return to Italy.”
What do you think of the fans’ passion that they showed you yesterday?
“It’s a great feeling. I was already familiar with Roma’s passionate support, but I wasn’t expecting so many people at the airport. This makes me happy, and it gives me a lot of desire to kick this year off with a bang. That’s the beauty of football: the fans are always behind the players. I’ve come to a team and a city where you can really feel the support.”
What do you think of your time at PSG, looking back?
“I’m very happy with how my career has gone. When I arrived at PSG, they hadn’t won anything in a long time, and in the last seven years we won 19 trophies. I played a role in all the games, all the championships. One of the reasons I’m here is because I want to experience something different, and carry on feeling like an important part of a team.”
What role do you see yourself in with Roma next year?
“The coach will decide that. I hope to train well and put myself at his disposal. I’ve spoken to him a couple of times, and I think he’ll want to play me more in the midfield in this team, but I know that will change many times over the course of a match. He’s never spoken to me about a specific role, but I’m at his disposal: I’ll play where he wants me to, I don’t mind.”
What’s the first thing that came to your mind when they spoke to you about Roma?
“I wanted to return to Italy, and do well. Now I’ll start, along with all my teammates, to think about our goals, and how to put in a great season next year. They got to the semi-finals of the Champions League, which is far from easy. I’m sure the coach and the team will want to repeat that feat. I’m here to help the side do better, that’s the most important thing.”
With PSG you had to hold yourself back on the pitch, with all the attackers they had, and instead you specialised as a midfielder. Have you spoken about this with Eusebio Di Francesco?
“It always depends on the team, and on the teammates you have by your side. In Paris sometimes I played in the hole, other times in midfield, or as a left-sided attacker. I don’t have a problem with where I play, I’ll always try and adapt to the tactical decisions taken by the coach.”
“There are a lot of players at PSG, but the ones who get picked are the ones that have to play: the latest to arrive. I’d been there for seven years. In the first years I’d always play, but then with lots of players in the same role it makes it harder to have a steady place in the team, as well as the fact we’d change managers every two years. I couldn’t compete with Neymar, there’s no keeping up with him, he’s a phenomenon. What I want now, here, is to play for Roma, and feel valued.”
What do you think of Italian football these days?
“I’ve always kept up with it, and when I left I kept tabs on what went on. It’s true that Juventus have a very strong team, but these last two years they’ve had more difficulty, because their opponents, like Roma and Napoli, have really strengthened themselves. It’s natural that if you’re a footballer you want to win: I’m not here to come fourth or fifth. We’re going to give it our best shot and try to come as close as we can to what Juventus is today.
“The ideal thing would be for us to come to the final three matches of the league with a chance to win it. For the moment I need to get used to the squad, and play well. It will be a long season, and we hope to do well.”
What’s your impression of Monchi?
“I spoke to him straight away. Everyone has spoken well of him and his work to me. It was easy, we speak the same language, he’s a good man who works very well and has achieved success in Spain, where he’s very highly regarded. My friends who work there told me to go straight to Roma, they’d only speak about him. Now we’ve met, and we have a good relationship. I’m sure he will keep going in the same manner, and we hope to achieve great things together.”
Who stuck out to you from Roma’s last season?
“There are some top footballers here, but I have to say that last year Roma really played well as a team. De Rossi did very well, Dzeko always gets on the scoresheet, Perotti and El Shaarawy are great with the ball and understand the game. When we start training I’ll be able to see up close all the individual qualities of every one of my teammates, and understand them better.
“I always like to understand a player’s strengths, so that I can try and bring them out during the match. I’m here to show everyone the Flaco they knew when I played for Palermo.”