Roma’s Mourinho Lauds Former Sampdoria Striker for Inter Treble Victory in 2009/10

The Nerazzurri stormed towards the Scudetto title last season, led by tactician Antonio Conte and spearheaded by now-Chelsea striker Romelu Lukaku. However, the club had to wait a decade before becoming Italian champions, with the previous set of titles – a treble, infact – arriving during Roma coach Jose Mourinho’s days in charge at the club.

Mourinho, in an interview with DAZN shed light on one certain player who he claims to have had a severe impact on his career during his time at Inter. That player is ‘Il Pazzo’ (a.k.a The Madman) Giampaolo Pazzini.

Pazzini joined Inter from Sampdoria in January 2011, a year after The Special One’s historic treble-winning season at the club. And as the Portuguese points out, Pazzini had an impact on him and Inter even before joining the club, during his days at Il Doria.

On April 25, 2010, as the season drew to a close and with only a handful of matches remaining, Roma took on Sampdoria at the Stadio Olimpico on the back of a 24-game unbeaten streak and in close contention for the Serie A title.

Mourinho’s Nerazzurri had beaten Atalanta 3-1 earlier to climb to the summit of Serie A, before which they outwitted Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona dreamteam with the same scoreline in the UEFA Champions League semi-finals 1st leg at Giuseppe Meazza.

It was a must win game for Claudio Ranieri and co. in the run to the Scudetto title.

However, party pooper Pazzini was the star of the show as he delivered a brace in a 2-1 victory for Sampdoria, ending Roma’s undefeated streak and allowing Inter to leapfrog them having played the same number of matches.

“Pazzini never played for me, but he helped me win the treble because we were level points with Roma when he scored two goals at the Olimpico. It was the day when Inter took the lead. Then we won the treble. So even if I didn’t have him, he was very important for my career,”  Mourinho explained.

The Giallorossi, led by Mourinho now, are still in search for their fourth Scudetto title, having won their last Serie A championship in 2000/01 fueled by Francesco Totti and Gabriel Batistuta presence.