Roma sold the Italy international in February for €15 million plus incentives and 20% of any potential transfer fees. It was quickly reported that he was simply making this an interim solution waiting so he could return to Italy, most likely for Milan or Juventus, in the summer. Zaniolo told Hurriyet, "I have no intention of merely staying here to wait for an offer and then leaving at the conclusion of the season. "I want to win the championship and then represent Galatasaray in the Champions League."
After serving a month-long ban as a result of the tragic earthquake, he definitely got off to a terrific start when the season started since he scored just 15 minutes after coming off the bench. There are still conflicting stories on the specifics of his release clause; at first, it was asserted that there was a separate clause just for a return to Serie A.