Miralem Pjanic discussed his rapport with ex-Juventus Coach Max Allegri and “cannot explain” how Roma treated Daniele De Rossi, Francesco Totti and Radja Nainggolan.
The Bosnia international spoke to Vanity Fair about his life, career and relationships, including with former Juve Coach Allegri.
“I have a great rapport with Allegri and we speak often. He just wants to reflect a little on his next step and once he’s made a decision, he’ll have no problem finding a big club.
“Of course, we clashed a few times, that’s only normal. He is someone who says things clearly to your face, as am I. More than anything, he jokes around and says when I left Roma, I couldn’t place a pass longer than five metres, that I became a great player thanks to him.
“But when he says that he was the best Italian midfielder in history, then I’m the one who starts laughing!”
Pjanic found success at Juve after leaving Roma, but other former teammates were not so fortunate, as Radja Nainggolan is back at Cagliari after one year at Inter, while Daniele De Rossi and Francesco Totti found themselves left without a contract.
“I cannot explain how they treated De Rossi and Totti like that. I spoke to both of them and they too are struggling to give any explanation behind it.
“Totti wanted to get out of a situation that was not good for him, as he didn’t identify with the way the club was being run, was not satisfied with the role he’d been given and was convinced he could give more. But I know he’s hurting.
“What they did to De Rossi is quite simply a mystery. When you see the best players leave Roma, year after year, you have to start asking yourself some questions. And at the end of the day, you get fed up.
“I feel bad for Nainggolan, as I know what a lovely lad and great player he is. Every now and then, he makes mistakes, and is too direct, too open. He ought to be more intelligent and discreet.
“His whole life and career have been like that, so perhaps it’s just how he gets the best out of himself. I hope he can emerge from this difficult moment soon.”
Pjanic was raised in Luxembourg, where his father – also a professional football player – fled just before the war broke out in the former Yugoslavia.
“My father would travel around the country for games and he realised earlier than anyone what was about to happen, because he could tell that friends were becoming enemies, could see the ethnic hatred within stadiums and villages. He picked up two plastic bags full of our things and left, to prepare for the arrival of his family.
“When we managed to qualify Bosnia for their first ever world Cup, I cried out of pride and joy.”