When Gregoire Defrel signed for Roma in the summer of 2017, it was the end of a long and often arduous pursuit. The Giallorossi had been thwarted in their interest in January that year but, after returning with another offer in the summer, Defrel had no hesitation in signing on.
“I was a bit disappointed not to join Roma [in January] because it was a huge opportunity for me, but I didn’t panic," Defrel reflected. "I promised myself that I’d have another great six months at Sassuolo and hoped the chance would come around again at the end of the season.
"When my agent told me that Roma were still interested this summer, I was really pleased and said yes straight away.”
Defrel may be French, but he knows Italian football better than anything else - having joined Parma before he even left his teenage years behind. Spells at Foggia and Cesena saw the youngster start to develop a reputation but it was at Sassuolo where he really flourished; making a name for himself under the tutelage of coach Eusebio Di Francesco and finding a consistent scoring habit in Serie A.
Predominantly a striker, whose pace and high workrate make him equally suited to operating from the flanks, it was not hard to see why Di Francesco wanted Defrel to come with him when he made the move to Roma. A player who has made hard work the cornerstone of everything he has achieved, that quality will surely be greatly appreciated by the Olimpico fans as Defrel takes his chance to play for one of Italy's biggest sides.Show More Show Less