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Sporting director Monchi joins Roma exit

Milan (AFP) – Roma and their sporting director Monchi parted ways by mutual consent on Friday a day after coach Eusebio Di Francesco was sacked, the Serie A club confirmed.

The 50-year-old Spaniard’s exit follows a poor run of results and Roma’s Champions League last 16, second-leg defeat at Portuguese club Porto with former Leicester and Chelsea boss Claudio Ranieri poised to return as head coach.

“I want to thank Monchi for the dedication he has shown over the past two years,” said AS Roma CEO Guido Fienga.

Monchi — full name Ramon Rodriguez Verdejo — spent 17 years as a sporting director at Sevilla, a club he also represented as a player, before joining Roma in 2017.

“I would like to thank President (James) Pallotta, the club’s management, staff, players and fans for their support during my time at the club,” said Monchi.

“I wish Roma a lot of success in the future.”

Monchi has been linked with a move to Arsenal having worked with head coach Unai Emery at Sevilla, where he won 11 trophies including an historic three consecutive Europa League titles between 2014 and 2016.

During his time in Sevilla he helped discover players such as Dani Alves, Sergio Ramos, Jose Antonio Reyes and Seydou Keita, and at Roma signed players such as Javier Pastore, Justin Kluivert and promising youngster Nicolo Zaniolo.

But Roma are fifth in Serie A, three points off the Champions League berths, after falling 3-0 last weekend to city rivals Lazio.

“I know we have not achieved all the results for which we have worked,” Monchi later wrote on Instagram.

Federic Massara will take over the club’s sporting operations, Roma added.

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