Pablo Daniel Osvaldo claims leaving Roma for Southampton was an easy decision.
The striker has spent the past two years in the Italian capital, scoring 27 goals in 55 Serie A appearances. However, he hasn’t always been popular with the Rossoneri supporters, who were critical of him last season when they missed out on qualification for Europe and, although he only played the final 15 minutes, lost the cup final to rivals Lazio.
Osvaldo left the stadium after that match, stopping only to insult coach Aurelio Andreazzoli on his way out. This appeared to be the final straw for the 27-year-old, who had earlier in the season fallen out with team-mates Francesco Totti and Erik Lamela. But upon his departure from the club, it is the supporters who he reserves most of his wrath for.
“A part of the Roma support behaved badly towards me for no precise reason,” he said. “Every time that I stepped on to the pitch for Roma I gave my all, but some supporters didn’t act correctly towards me – but I wasn’t the only one. Leaving Roma for Southampton wasn’t difficult, not at all. In fact, from the moment I signed, I was relieved.”
The Saints have paid a club record £12.8million for Osvaldo, who becomes their third big-money signing of the summer after Victor Wanyama (£12million) and Dejan Lovren (£8.5million). By moving to St Mary’s, he will link up with his former Espanyol coach Mauricio Pochettino, something the striker is clearly looking forward to.
“He’s magnificent,” he added. “It’s fantastic, great to work with him. He is a great motivator and for me it’s very important to work with people who appreciate and respect how I work. For many years people haven’t appreciated that. I know him well and how he sets out his teams. The season I had at Espanyol was my best as a footballer.”