Brazilian midfielder Gerson was officially unveiled as a Roma player at a press conference in Pinzolo on Sunday morning.
The teenager, who arrived from Fluminense earlier in the summer, was asked about his preferred position, his hopes of following in a long line of Brazilian stars in the Giallorossi shirt, and the conversations he has alreayd had with Luciano Spalletti.
Read the full transcript from press conference below.
Welcome to Roma! How would you describe yourself as a player and which is your preferred position?
“I’m a midfielder. I roam all across central midfield and I like providing assists and making key passes for my team-mates as well as shooting from distance. I’m delighted to be here at a big European club. I’ll try to do my best.”
Roma have long traditions when it comes to Brazilian players. How did you see Roma growing up and what’s it like to be here now?
“Roma is a huge club with a great tradition of Brazilian players. I’d like to make my mark here, like many others have done in the past. For me it’s an honour to be able to wear this shirt. Now I need to produce on the pitch.”
The position of central midfielder is slightly different in Europe compared to Brazil. Has Luciano Spalletti spoken about that with you?
“Yes, he’s already told me that. The positions are very different but I’m ready to do my best to help my team-mates, with and without the ball.”
What convinced you to choose Roma?
“Roma is a massive club. It wasn’t a difficult decision – I thought it was the best thing for me.”
Is there a particular player from the past that you look up to? Toninho Cerezo and Paulo Roberto Falcao at Roma, for example.
“I know that Falcao was a great player and made history with this club, but I’m very young and have never seen him play.”
What difficulties are you anticipating in Serie A?
“I’m sure that if I give my all I won’t have too many problems.”
You’re considered to be one of the best young talents in the world. Do you feel any expectation?
“I want to thank everyone who rates me as one of the best talents in my age group. That carries with it great responsibility but I’m ready to show what I can do.”
What are your objectives and how are you settling in with your new team-mates?
“Roma have a great side and the aim is to go all the way in every competition – I hope to contribute to that. I’m delighted to be here, I felt right at home straight away and I want to thank all my team-mates for the way they’ve welcomed me.”
What kind of relationship do you have with your father? Why did you go back to Brazil instead of staying in Italy?
“It couldn’t be better – we speak often and he always listens to me. After we met with the Roma management, we decided the best thing to do was to return to Brazil and I was happy with that, but I was already wanting to come back to Roma for good to make my contribution.”
Have you spoken with Francesco Totti about that photo of you holding the No.10 shirt?
“That shirt was a gift and I was happy to accept it. I was delighted to receive a shirt with the number worn by the best players in Europe and the world. Any player would be happy to have it and show it off to the world with a photo.”
Walter Sabatini was desperate to sign you for the club. Has he given you any advice?
“I just want to thank him for doing everything to bring me to Roma. I’ll do all I can not to disappoint him.”
Why did you choose the No.30 shirt?
“Because that was the number I had when I made my Fluminense debut at 17 years old.”