Football

Totti's Roma career over but he hints at 'new adventure'

An emotional Francesco Totti admitted that he is unsure "what the future looks like" after drawing a line under his 24 storied years as a Roma player.

The 40-year-old striker emerged as a second-half substitute in Roma's final Serie A game of the season - a 3-2 victory over Genoa.

Only last week did Totti confess he knew his days in Giallorossi colours were finally over.

A six-year directorship has been tabled, but he says he is still passionate about playing and might seek a "new adventure".

Addressing the crowd from the centre of the Stadio Olimpico pitch following full-time yesterday morning (Singapore time), the veteran said: "At some point in life, you grow up - that's what I've been told and that's what time has decided.

"Time has tapped me on the shoulder and said, 'You can no longer enjoy the smell of the grass, the sun on your face as you bear down on the opposition's goal, the adrenalin consuming you, the joy of celebrating'.

"It's not easy to turn out the light. I'm afraid.

"It's not the same fear you feel when you're standing in front of the goal, about to take a penalty.

"I'm afraid... This time, I can't see what the future looks like through the holes of the net."
Francesco Totti

"This time, I can't see what the future looks like through the holes of the net. With your support, I will succeed in turning the page and throwing myself into a new adventure.

"Being the captain of this team has been an honour.

"I will no longer entertain you with my feet, but my heart will always be there with you.

"Now, I will go down the stairs and enter the dressing room that welcomed me as a child and that I now leave as a man."

Totti made his debut at the age of 16, in a league match at Brescia on March 28, 1993. He made 786 appearances in all competitions, scoring 307 goals, including 250 in Serie A.

He won the Scudetto once, under Fabio Capello's stewardship in 2001, but found himself a runner-up with the club on no fewer than nine occasions.

Yesterday morning, goals from Edin Dzeko, Daniele De Rossi and Diego Perotti confirmed Roma's qualification for the Champions League group stage. - PA SPORT

time, I can't see what the future looks like through the holes of the net."

 

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