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Roma-fansNine-man AS Roma crashed out of the Champions League with a 3-0 home defeat in a play-off second leg against FC Porto on Wednesday night.

Roma only needed a scoreless draw to advance as they drew the first leg in Portugal 1-1 but had Emerson and Daniele De Rossi sent off. Considering that Roma had Thomas Vermaelen sent off in the first leg also, the lack of discipline from Luciano Spalletti’s side is inexcusable.

Roma will now head to the Europa League, and after missing out on at least €30 million for reaching the Champions League group stages, we will have to see how that lack of revenue impacts Roma’s activity in the remaining days in the transfer market.

Champions League trophyThe final places for the group stages of the 2016-17 Champions League will be confirmed this evening setting us up nicely for the draw on Thursday.

Plenty of Europe’s finest clubs have been waiting patiently for the qualification rounds to end and the groups to be decided with … among the clubs awaiting this Champions League draw.

Dreams of Champions League glory will (most likely) remain nothing more than that distant dream in all reality but others will know they’ve got a genuine chance of going all the way in Europe this season looking to emulate Real Madrid, who won this last season with a penalty shootout win over La Liga rivals Atletico Madrid in Milan last May.

inter-fansWhile former AC Milan boss Arrigo Sacchi likes new Inter boss Frank De Boer, he is not very enthusiastic about the Nerazzurri’s chances in this coming Serie A season.

Writing in his Corriere della Sera column, the two-time Champions League winner was glowing in his praise for FDB saying:

“I know De Boer well and I like him a lot,” Sacchi told Il Corriere della Sera. “He likes to cultivate an open game and with Ajax he managed to win without huge budgets.”

But what concerns Sacchi is that de Boer will be playing with players picked by Mancini adding:

Champions League trophyRoma coach Luciano Spalletti criticised new signing Thomas Vermaelen for getting sent off on his debut for the club in the 1-1 draw at Porto in the first leg of their Champions League playoff on Wednesday.

Vermaelen, 30, joined the Giallorossi from Barcelona last week but only lasted 41 minutes of his first match for his new side after receiving two yellow cards at the Estadio do Dragao.

Roma head into the second leg next week with a slight advantage due to their away goal, but Spalletti felt they would have had a more comfortable advantage had Belgium international Vermaelen not let the side down.

FDB-Inter-BossIn an interview with Gazzetta dello Sport , new Inter coach Frank de Boer has outlined his clear ideas and vision for what he hopes will be a successful spell at the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza.

Having only taken over at the club little more than a week ago, the former Ajax boss acknowledged that it will take him time to implement his methods but insisted he knows exactly what he wants to do to make the club a force again.

Here is what the Inter boss had to say”

Frank, when did you first realise you would become coach?

inter-milan-fansAccording to Gazzetta dello Sport, Frank de Boer will use a 4-3-3 formation when Inter travel to Chievo Verona this weekend in their Serie A opener this weekend.

As we have seen glimpses off in preseason, Inter’s attacking four of Banega; Perisic; Candreva and Icardi are as good as anyone on Serie. With pace on the wings and Banega pulling the strings in midfield, Icardi should be able to get 20+ goals this season.

Inter might need all those goals if they are to qualify for the Champions League and defensively there are still so many problems.

fat-higuainThe new Serie A season is almost here, and while Juventus’s transfer activities havre garnered all the headlines, the strengthening efforts of Italy’s other elite cannot be ignored. Here is a look at the transfer activity this summer of Juventus, Inter, Roma and AC Milan.

Juventus
Juventus have arguably had the best summer of anyone in Italy, earning a 9/10 rating for their efforts.

Their moves to sign Dani Alves and Mehdi Benatia have almost gone under the radar in a hectic summer of sporting events – the European Championship and Olympic Games distracting us – but are fantastic acquisitions regardless.

Joao MarioInter have reached an agreement with Sporting CP for Joao Mario.

The deal will become official in the next 72 hours once Mario passes his physical. The midfielder will reportedly cost €40m with an additional €5m in bonuses and Mario has agreed to a five year contract that will pay him €3m per year after tax.

Inter are expected to sign the Portuguese star on an initial loan for €10m, with an obligation to buy next summer for €35m in order to aid their bid to stay in line with Financial Fair Play rules.

Brozovic-InterAccording to according to calciomercato.com, Inter Milan midfielder Marcelo Brozovic will hand in a transfer request if he isn’t offered a new contract.

The Croatian is currently earning €1.2 million a year with the Serie A side but wants a deal closer to what his midfield team mates are earning.

Both Arsenal and Juventus are believed to be in contact with the 23 year old, who joined Inter from Dinamo Zagreb on a one and half year loan deal back in January 2015 before making the move officially permanent this summer.

Roma-fansIt is all change at Roma as they prepare for a busy period in the transfer market which could see midfielders Leandro Paredes and William Vainqueur make way for new signings.

Leicester City have offered €22 million for Paredes, who is also being monitored by AC Milan, Zenit St.Petersburg and Schalke.

Vanqueur was a bit-part player for the Giallorossi last season and will likely also need to be offloaded if Roma wish to secure a deal for their midfield targets.

Highly-rated Bologna midfielder Amadou Diawara remains firmly on their radar, whilst the Lupi are also ready to fight it out with Napoli for Gent captain Sven Kums.