They followed those up with underwhelming defeats against Scotland and Wales before bouncing back with an impressive display in England, eventually going down 18-11 but keeping the Red Rose tryless against them for the first time in their history.
Cittadini played a leading role in that display, replacing Martin Castriogiovanni in the first half and shoring up the Italian scrum.
And with Ireland coming to the Stadio Olimpico for the final game, Cittadini is desperate to see Italy bow out on a high.
He said: "There are a lot of positives, the start against France which was a great game. We can't forget the two less impressive games we played against Scotland and Wales.
"This final game could make a big difference to how we look at this Six Nations. A win would certainly make a massive difference to the overall assessment of the competition.
"Of course we can find positives in the defeats though, the possession and territory has been in our favour in almost every game.
"We've never beaten Ireland in this squad so there is a lot of motivation. To do it at home, in the last game of the Six Nations in front of our great fans, it's very important.
"But more important than the result is that we play well. If we play at our best the results will come, but that's what we have to do."