Totti, 40, to finish Roma playing career when season ends
ABS-CBN Sports on May 04, 2017 10:25 AM
FILE -- In this March 1, 2017, Roma's Francesco Totti, left, and Lazio's Lucas Biglia vie for the ball during an Italian Cup, first-leg, semifinal soccer match at the Rome Olympic stadium. Roma great Francesco Totti wants "to destroy" Lazio in what could be his last ever derby on Sunday. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)ROME (AP) — Francesco Totti will end his illustrious playing career with Roma when the season finishes next month.
The 40-year-old forward will have the opportunity to assume a director's role at the club where he has spent his entire career, Roma's sporting director Ramon Rodriguez Verdejo said Wednesday.
Verdejo, who is known as Monchi, is expecting Totti to move into the non-playing role that was agreed when the forward signed up for one final season on the field.
"I want to look ahead, and I want to be as close as possible to Francesco in the future, I want him to be right here, next to me," Monchi told a news conference. "I want to learn what Roma is, and Francesco is Roma."
Despite the offer of club directorship, Totti could still choose to continue his playing career away from Roma.
In the Eternal City, Totti is Roma's eternal leader — first made captain in 1998 when he was only 22.
"I want him to be close to me, if he wants to, so that he can teach me," said Monchi, who has just been hired from Sevilla. "I would be lucky with just the one percent of his knowledge of Roma."
Totti has been playing for Roma for 25 years since making his debut in the final stages of a 2-0 win at Brescia on March 28, 1993.
Totti, who also won the World Cup with Italy in 2006, could have won more than the solitary Serie A title, two Italian Cups and two national Super Cups he claimed with Roma. But he rejected offers of more money and glory to remain with his childhood club.