Roberto: I wish Marco Silva the best but I want him to lose!
Roberto may be a relatively new face to West Ham United fans, but he will certainly need no introduction to Everton manager Marco Silva on Saturday.
The Hammers goalkeeper, who will start in place of the injured Lukasz Fabianski at Goodison Park, enjoyed a record-breaking 2015/16 season under Silva at Greek club Olympiacos.
Named captain by the Portuguese coach, Roberto led the Athens giants to the Superleague title, losing just one of their 30 matches, keeping 15 clean sheets and conceding just 14 goals.
Four years on, both are plying their trade in the English Premier League, where they will come face-to-face for the first time this weekend.
Unfortunately, in football, the good moments for one are bad moments for the others. Personally, I wish him the best but I want him to lose!
“I will be really happy to see Marco and all his staff again on Saturday as we spent some really good moments together in Olympiacos,” said the 33-year-old. “I think he deserves to be in his place in Everton because he did really well in Olympiacos and he has done a great job at other clubs, too.
“Football is football, though, and everyone wants the best for themselves and the most important thing for us is to win and get the best result we can get.
“Unfortunately, in football, the good moments for one are bad moments for the others. Personally, I wish him the best but I want him to lose!”
Not only will Roberto be seeking to get one over his old boss, but he is also seeking his first Premier League win since replacing the injured Lukasz Fabianski in Manuel Pellegrini’s team.
The opportunity to play regularly is one the No13 would not have expected, but it is one he is excited by.
“It’s something that I probably didn’t expect in the beginning,” he confirmed. “I knew when I arrived it was always going to be a difficult fight or half-fight with Lukasz. But unfortunately, he has gotten injured and that’s something that we don’t like but for a goalkeeper that represents an opportunity that I will try to take.”
And the former Atletico Madrid player says his teammates have made it easier for him to settle into life in east London and adapt to the unique demands of the Premier League.
“I am in a club and in a team where everyone helps you right from the beginning,” he said. “The main difference that I have found has been in the Premier League games because the amount of contact is different, the pace is different, and this is something that surprises you when you play your first games. We are professionals and we have to be used to this without a doubt.
“So, it has been very easy for me to feel a part of the pace of the game with my teammates.”
Saturday's fixture will be broadcast live in the UK by BT Sport 1, with coverage starting at 12noon.