When Roma Director Tiago Pinto Called Dybala ‘Little Messi’

Roma signing Paulo Dybala might arrive as a surprise to many, but for the ones following sporting director Tiago Pinto since his Benfica days, it is bound to be less stupefying. Despite the fact that it was José Mourinho who pressurized the Giallorossi management to move for La Joya, one cannot misconstrue the impact the Portuguese director had in materializing the transfer.

Sky Italia has relayed an interview with Italian transfer market expert Gianluca Di Marzio back in August 2020, when Pinto was still the director of football at Benfica. The executive named the Argentine playmaker as his favorite Serie A player, alongside Swede legend Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

When quizzed who his most preferred Serie A player is, he didn’t think twice before answering.

“Personally, it is not an Italian player, but I like Dybala the most (along with Ibrahimovic). Mainly because he is the most technically gifted player in the league,” he said.

Pinto even went to liken the soon-to-be Roma newcomer Dybala to Lionel Messi.

“He is a little Messi that I like a lot since his Palermo days.”

Dybala will join the Giallorossi to continue his Serie A journey, having agreed a three-year contract deal worth €6M net per season. As Francesco Totti indicated earlier, Dybala might be handed the iconic number 10 jersey that has been vacant since Il Capitano left the Stadio Olimpico.