Totti playing for Roma in 2009
|Full name||Francesco Totti|
|Date of birth||27 September 1976|
|Place of birth||Rome, Italy|
|Height||1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 30 January 2016.
Francesco Totti, Ufficiale OMRI, (Italian pronunciation: [franˈtʃesko ˈtɔtti]; born 27 September 1976) is an Italian professional footballer who plays for, and captains, Serie A club Roma. His primary playing positions are those of an attacking midfielder or supporting forward, although he has also been successfully utilized as a lone striker and as a winger. Totti has spent his entire career at Roma, winning a Serie A title, two Coppa Italia titles, and two Supercoppa Italiana titles; he is the top goalscorer and the most capped player in the club's history. Totti also holds the record for the youngest club's captain in the history of Serie A.
A creative playmaker renowned for his technical ability and goal scoring, Totti is considered to be one of the greatest Italian players of all time, one of the most talented players of his generation, and also, by some, to be Roma's greatest player ever. He has won a record eleven Oscar del calcio from the Italian Footballers' Association, which consists of five Serie A Italian Footballer of the Year awards, two Serie A Footballer of the Year awards, two Serie A Goal of the Year awards, one Serie A Goalscorer of the Year award and one Serie A Young Footballer of the Year award. Totti is the seventh highest scoring Italian in all competitions, with 309 goals.
A 2006 FIFA World Cup winner and UEFA Euro 2000 finalist with Italy, Totti was selected in the All-Star team for both tournaments; he also represented his country at the 2002 World Cup, and at Euro 2004. He has also won several individual awards, the most important of which are the 2007 European Golden Shoe and the Golden Foot. In 2004 he was named in the FIFA 100, a list of the world's greatest living players selected by Pelé as part of FIFA's centenary celebrations. In 2011, Totti was recognized by IFFHS as the most popular footballer in Europe. In October 2014, Totti extended his record as the oldest goalscorer in UEFA Champions League history, aged 38 years and 59 days.
Often referred to as Il Bimbo d'Oro (The Golden Boy), Il Re di Roma (The King of Rome), Er Pupone (The Big Baby), and Il Gladiatore (The Gladiator) by the Italian sports media, Totti is currently the top active goalscorer in Serie A, and the second highest scorer of all-time in Italian league history with 244 goals.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Club career
- 2.1 Roma
- 3 International career
- 4 Style of play
- 5 Outside football
- 6 Career statistics
- 7 Honours
- 8 Works
- 9 See also
- 10 References
- 11 Bibliography
- 12 External links
Totti was born in Rome, to parents Lorenzo and Fiorella Totti. He was raised in the Porta Metronia neighbourhood. He idolized ex-Roma captain Giuseppe Giannini, and regularly played football with older boys. Totti began to play youth team football at the age of 8, with Fortitudo, then he joined Smit Trastevere and Lodigiani. After he came to the attention of scouts, his mother refused a lucrative offer from A.C. Milan so as to keep him in his home town. Although his youth club initially had come to an agreement to sell Totti to the Lazio youth side, one of Roma's youth coaches, Gildo Giannini, persuaded his parents to let him join the Roma youth squad in 1989.
After three years on the youth team, Totti made his first appearance for Roma's senior side in Serie A at the age of sixteen, when coach Vujadin Boškov let him play in the 2–0 away victory against Brescia on 28 March 1993. In the following season under Carlo Mazzone, Totti began to play more games and scored his first goal on 4 September 1994 in a 1–1 draw against Foggia. By 1995, Totti had become a regular in Roma's starting line-up and scored 16 goals during the next three seasons, publicly praising his manager Mazzone for helping him to develop as a footballer. After Mazzone left Roma, Totti worked with Carlos Bianchi, and also enjoyed a short-spell with one of the most important managers in the club's history, Nils Liedholm.
Zeman era I: The playmaker
Totti's years under Zeman represented a period of both physical and mental maturation as a player. From a technical and tactical standpoint, he proved to be compatible in the rigid formations of the Bohemian coach; he also became physically more powerful and complete. From a mental perspective, he displayed a greater responsibility throughout the team, and was presented with the number 10 jersey. His first season under Zeman started well, with Totti taking advantage of a 4-3-3 formation, scoring as many goals as possible and providing assists for his teammates. On 9 November 1997, he scored his first Serie A brace, against Bari, cementing his status as one of the most promising young players in the league; furthermore, some critics began to suggest that coach Cesare Maldini should include him in the Italian squad for the 1998 World Cup in France. He had an excellent start to the season, the exception being on 14 December 1997 when a match against Inter ended with a 3–0 defeat ended with Totti receiving a red card. The goal-drought that resulted after that match was finally brought to an end in a 2–0 win against Napoli on 22 February 1998. From that match on until the end of the season, Totti scored 8 goals and contributed to Roma's fourth place league finish that year. The following season began with Totti being awarded the Guerin d'Oro for the 1997–98 season, given to him for his consistent performances throughout the course of the previous Serie A season, having achieved the highest average rating of any Serie A player. On 31 October 1998, at the age of 22, Totti became the official team captain, the youngest Serie A club captain ever, and began to gain recognition as a club symbol and as a leader. Overall, he scored 30 goals during Zeman's two-year managerial stint. Although Totti was not called up for the 1998 FIFA World Cup, he was named the Serie A Young Footballer of the Year for the 1998–99 season.
Capello era: 2001 Scudetto
By the 2000–01 campaign, Roma, then coached by Fabio Capello, were building a competitive team around Totti, who by now was being utilised as a creative attacking midfielder due to his passing skills and playmaking abilities. Totti scored in a 2–0 home win over Bologna on his season debut. Against Udinese, Totti scored with a powerful left-footed volley. He continued his goalscoring form by scoring against Napoli at home in a 3–0 victory. Totti played an important role in leading the club to the top of the table, gaining a comfortable lead over rivals Juventus. On 17 June 2001, at the Stadio Olimpico, Roma beat Parma 3–1, with their three main attackers, Totti, Vincenzo Montella and Gabriel Batistuta scoring one goal each, as Roma were crowned champions of Italy. On 19 August 2001 Totti won his first Supercoppa Italiana, scoring in the 3–0 win against Fiorentina.
Totti was named the Serie A Italian Footballer of the Year for both 2000 and 2001. He received his first Ballon d'Or nomination in 2000, finishing fourteenth in the voting and fifth the following year. Due to his performances, Totti had become a hero to the Roma supporters, who were able to identify with his background as a Roma native and lifelong supporter.
In the following seasons, Totti played as second striker as part of a 3–5–2 formation and scored his first hat-trick in Serie A, in the 3-2 win over Brescia. Totti also scored in Roma's decisive victory at the Bernabéu against Real Madrid (0–1) on 30 October 2002; this was the first time in 35 years that an Italian team had won a match in Madrid. He continued his goalscoring exploits against Valencia, scoring two goals in Roma's 3–0 win. Despite this, Roma only finished third in their Champions League group and in eighth position in Serie A, although they managed to reach the 2003 Coppa Italia Final. In the Coppa Italia final against Milan, Totti scored three times from free kicks (one goal at home and two at the San Siro), but Roma lost out to Milan 6–3 on aggregate. In 2003, Totti won his second Serie A Footballer of the Year Award.
In the 2003–04 season, Totti played a key role in helping Roma to finish runners-up to Milan in the Scudetto race. Throughout the league season he scored 20 goals, his best haul in Serie A up to that point, which allowed him to win his 2nd Guerin d'Oro, as the player with the best average rating in Serie A throughout the season. Moreover, the Roma captain notably performed his trademark "cucchiaio" chipped goal on several occasions throughout the season.
Despite a disappointing 2004–05 season, which saw Capello leave for Juventus and Roma slip to eighth place while making four coaching changes during the course of the season, including Cesare Prandelli, Rudi Völler, Luigi Delneri and Bruno Conti, Totti maintained consistent form by scoring fifteen goals, among which his 100th Serie A goal against Internazionale, on 3 October 2004, with a free kick from 30 metres. Two months later, on 19 December, he became Roma's all-time leading scorer after netting his 107th career goal against Parma, breaking the record previously held by Roberto Pruzzo.
Spalletti era: Transition to striker
Roma's new coach for the 2005–06 season, Luciano Spalletti, went with a 4–2–3–1 formation, deploying Totti in a newer, more offensive role. Despite his new attacking role, Totti would not remain forward waiting for crosses or passes from team-mates, but would rather drop deep to pick up the ball, thus creating space for the attacking midfielders and wingers to making offensive runs, to whom Totti was able to provide assists; this role would later be described as a "false-9". In this new position, Totti began to score more frequently than in previous season, and he scored 15 goals in 24 matches. At one point during this streak, the team won 11 consecutive games. In the spring of 2005 he renewed his contract until 2010 with an annual salary of €5.4 million. In January 2006, on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum held in Davos, Pelé spent words of praise for Totti, defining him "the best player in the world". On 19 February 2006, he suffered a fracture of his left fibula and ligament damage during a match against Empoli after being fouled by Richard Vanigli. Totti risked missing the 2006 World Cup, but returned to the side on 11 May as a substitute in Roma's 3–1 Coppa Italia Final defeat to Internazionale. A metal plate had been attached to his ankle during surgery, but doctors decided not to operate again and remove it following Totti's return, after concurring that it would not affect his gameplay. He was given off-label treatments of teriparatide to speed-up his fracture recovery.
The 2006–07 season was a personal high for Totti; he scored 26 goals in Serie A, as well as another 6 goals in the Champions League (in this competition he scored three times in the group stage and one time in the round-of-16 against Lyon) and the Coppa Italia. Despite their elimination from the Champions League by Manchester United in the quarter-finals, Roma won the Coppa Italia against Inter Milan, with a 6–2 victory at home (Totti scored the opening goal after fifty seconds) and a 2–1 defeat at the Giuseppe Meazza stadium in Milan; as the club's captain, Totti was therefore able to lift his first Coppa Italia. In the first half of the season, on 26 October 2006, against Sampdoria, Totti produced a notable goal with a left-volley shot from a very tight angle; this goal was voted the best goal of the season, and it was included in the top ten goals from incredible angles drafted by The Sun. On 27 May 2007, Totti became the Serie A top scorer with 26 goals, and the following 17 June, he also was the recipient of the ESM European Golden Shoe award as the top European goalscorer of the season. Despite being the highest active goalscorer in Serie A, he was not among the finalists for the 2007 FIFA World Player of the Year due to his national team absence, although he was nominated for the 2007 Ballon d'Or, finishing tenth in the voting.
Totti scored his 200th goal with Roma in a 4–0 victory against Torino in Coppa Italia, on 16 January 2008. He was named the Serie A Italian Footballer of the Year for the fifth time in his career on 28 January. The following month, on 24 February he reached 386 appearances in Serie A with Roma in a match against Fiorentina, equaling the club appearance record previously held by Giacomo Losi, the former Roma captain of the sixties. He broke the record on 27 February, in the following match against Inter: in doing so, Totti became the player with the most appearances in Serie A for Roma. On 9 March, he collected his 500th overall appearance for Roma, scoring the second goal of the match from a penalty kick in a 2–0 away win over Napoli. He suffered a season-ending injury to his right knee during a 1–1 draw with Livorno on 19 April. Tests revealed a tear of his ACL that required surgery, ruling him out for four months. Roma won their ninth Coppa Italia with a 2–1 victory over Internazionale on 24 May; although Totti did not play the match, he was still allowed to lift the cup as the team's captain. With this win, Totti became the most successful captain in the team's history, with five titles and ten runners-up medals.
In the 2008–09 season Totti recovered readily from the previous injury, thus becoming a protagonist in the Rome derby (assisting Júlio Baptista's winning goal), in the game against Lecce, (providing assists for Vučinić and scoring a lobbed goal that closed the match) and in Roma's home fixture against Fiorentina (with a strike from the edge of the area). In the Champions League, he scored against Cluj (from a free kick), and the second goal in a 2–0 win against Bordeaux. On 8 November 2008, he made his 400th appearance in Serie A, in a 1–1 away draw against Bologna, scoring the opening goal of the match. On 19 April 2009, he scored his 175th Serie A goal in a 3–2 home win over Lecce, overtaking Amedeo Amadei as Roma's highest goalscorer of all time. Furthermore, with this goal, Totti became one of the top-ten goalscorers in Serie A history.
Ranieri era: Struggles
Roma's difficult start to the 2008–09 season and continued struggles at the start of the 2009–10 season saw Spalletti resign after his four-year reign and be replaced by Claudio Ranieri. Totti performed well in the inaugural UEFA Europa League; he scored three hat-tricks, first in a 7–1 away win against Gent in the third qualifying round and then another with the same score against Košice at the Olimpico in the play-off round. He also scored 3 goals against Bari, after seven years from his last hat-trick in the Serie A (against Brescia during the 2002–03 season), upon his return from a month-long injury.
On 30 November 2009, Totti confirmed he had signed a new five-year playing contract which would see him with the club until 2014, after which he stated he would become a club director for a further five years. The deal was made official by the Board of Directors on 16 December 2009. Roma offered a gross annual salary of €8.9M for 2009–10 and €8.6M in the next 4 seasons. He was the highest earning player of Roma in recent seasons until he was surpassed by Daniele De Rossi in 2012.
With a 24-match unbeaten run in Serie A, Roma became the only challengers to Inter in the last three rounds for the league title that season, ultimately finishing runners-up after the final fixture. Despite Totti's several injury problems, he surpassed legends such as Gabriel Batistuta, Giuseppe Signori, and Kurt Hamrin in the all-time league scoring records. Totti also played in the Coppa Italia Final against Inter on 5 May 2010 but received a red card in the closing minutes of the second half for kicking Mario Balotelli. Roma lost the match 0–1, failing to bring home a record 10th Coppa Italia title.
In the 2010–11 season, Roma continued their 'traditional' early struggles, which were partly blamed on Ranieri's failure to develop a consistent set of tactics, changing both formations and lineups after every week. Though on a personal level, Totti won the Golden Foot award, Ranieri's lack of faith in Totti meant that the captain would face more time on the substitute's bench in favour of younger forwards, such as Marco Borriello, Mirko Vučinić and Jérémy Menez. This limited playing time (including a 91st minute substitution against Sampdoria) resulted in only three league goals in 21 appearances. Following Roma's loss against Genoa on 20 February 2011, Ranieri resigned as manager of Roma and Totti saw his former teammate Vincenzo Montella appointed as caretaker coach.
Montella era: Return to form
Montella reverted to Spalletti's 4–2–3–1 system and Totti appeared to recapture his best form. On 3 March, Totti was voted the best active Italian player in a poll conducted by La Gazzetta dello Sport; 100 Italian personalities, including footballers, politicians, and showmen, took part in the vote. On 13 March 2011, he scored two goals against Lazio which gave Roma their fifth consecutive victory in the Rome Derby. On this occasion, he was awarded the nickname "The King of Rome is not dead", coined at the time of the second goal from the comments of the Northern Irish commentator Richard Whittle, Al Jazeera's correspondent. The following 20 March, Totti became the sixth player in Serie A history to score 200 goals, finding the target twice in that 2–2 draw with to raise his total to 201 league goals. On 1 May, Totti scored a brace against Bari to equal and subsequently overtake Roberto Baggio as the fifth highest goal-scorer in Serie A with his 205th and 206th career league goals, which put him behind only Silvio Piola, Gunnar Nordahl, Giuseppe Meazza and José Altafini. Totti completed a remarkable turn-around that season, completing the 2010–11 Serie A campaign with 15 goals – scoring 12 goals in Roma's last thirteen league fixtures.
At the end of the season, Roma underwent a revolution, with the former club's owner Rosella Sensi being replaced by the American consortium led by Thomas DiBenedetto. Under the new management, the club did not offer a permanent contract to Montella, which led him to coach another Serie A side, Catania; the Roma management appointed Luis Enrique, who had previous coached the Barcelona B side, to build Barcelona's exciting Spanish-based football style for Roma's long term project.
Enrique era: Back to playmaker
The 2011–12 season began with Totti getting few starts under Luis Enrique in a year that got off to a rocky start for Roma. He sustained an injury on 1 October 2011 in the second half against Atalanta which kept him out of action until the 20 November, when he came off the bench in the 66th minute against Lecce, as Roma won the match 2–1. During this absence, his presence was sorely missed on the pitch as the giallorossi's predominantly new and young team suffered highs and lows in their performances as they grew accustomed to each other.
In mid-December, as Totti began regaining form post-injury, his presence became more regular in Enrique's formations, often playing as an attacking midfielder. On 12 December, an otherwise strong performance in a 1–1 home draw against eventual champions Juventus, which included an assist for Daniele De Rossi's opening goal, was marred by a second half penalty miss. Totti offered up several more assists that season, notably for Pablo Osvaldo's goal in Roma's 3–1 win over Napoli at the San Paolo, and De Rossi's goal against Catania at the Massimino stadium. In his deeper position on the pitch, the Roma talisman did not seek to score goals as often, opting rather to play more of a supporting role by bridging the attack and midfield, using his presence and experience in games to offer some much needed depth to the team.
On 8 January 2012, Totti scored his first goals of the season in a 2–0 win against Chievo, converting one penalty in the first half and another in the second. He went on to score two goals in a 5–1 win against Cesena which allowed Totti to set a new record, as his second goal of the match brought his tally to 211 league goals – the most any player has ever scored for a single club in Serie A. Despite his inability to find the back of the net as the second round of the season began, his performances continued to be convincing, as he notably assisted Juan's goal from a corner in Roma's 4–0 win over Inter on 5 February. As of that game, Totti's seasonal statistics consisted of 8 goals and 7 assists in 25 appearances. Totti scored his fifth goal of the season in a 3–1 victory over Udinese. He scored again in a 2–1 loss against Fiorentina, and two weeks later, on his 500th match in Serie A, he scored two goals in a 2–2 draw against Catania at the Stadio Olimpico.
Zeman era II: Breaking records
After Luis Enrique decided to resign due to an unsuccessful season, in which Roma failed to qualify for European football for the first time in 15 years; the club decided to appoint their former manager Zdeněk Zeman with whom Totti would once again be reunited. Zeman tried to play Totti in a free-role, but as a left forward or winger in his preferred 4-3-3 tactical line-up; although this was a similar role to that which he had played during his previous spell under Zeman 13 years before, Totti's freedom also enabled him to drop deep into the midfield to press opponents and pick up the ball, as well as attacking on the left wing. On 2 September, Totti provided 2 assists for Alessandro Florenzi and Pablo Osvaldo in Roma's 3–1 win over Inter at the San Siro. After the match, he received high praise from the media due to his performance, even at the advanced age of nearly 36 years old. Two weeks later, he scored his 216th Serie A goal in the home game against Sampdoria, making him the joint third all-time highest goalscorer in Serie A. On 21 October, Totti surpassed both Giuseppe Meazza and José Altafini's joint-record after scoring the first of Roma's goals in a 2–4 away win at Genoa, becoming the third highest goal-scorer in Serie A history. He scored his third goal of the season against Parma in a 3–2 loss. On 4 November, Totti scored Roma's first goal in a 4–1 home victory against Palermo, his fourth of the season. On 8 December, Totti scored 2 goals, his 5th and 6th of the season, in a 4–2 home victory against Fiorentina.
On 20 January 2013, Totti scored his seventh goal of the season against Inter from the penalty spot. On 1 February, he scored his eighth goal of the season in a 2–4 defeat to Cagliari, and his ninth goal fifteen days later, the only goal in a home victory over Juventus. On 3 March, he scored his 225th goal against Genoa to become Serie A's joint second top scorer along with Gunnar Nordahl, as Roma cruised to a 3–1 victory. Totti finally broke Nordahl's record by scoring another goal against Parma on 18 March, thus increasing his tally to 226 goals. On April 8, with a goal on a penalty kick in the 1–1 draw against Lazio, he became the top scorer of all time in Serie A in the Rome derby with 9 goals, on par with Dino Da Costa and Marco Delvecchio. Totti finished the 2012–13 Serie A season with 12 goals and 12 assists in 34 appearances.
Garcia era: Free forward
With the arrival of Roma's new coach Rudi Garcia, in the summer of 2013, Totti was positioned once again as a false-9 so as drop deep to collect the ball and create space for the wingers to exploit, also functioning as a free-role supporting forward, or as winger on the left on occasion. On 20 September 2013, Roma announced that Totti had signed a new contract that will keep him at the club until 2016, at which time he would be 39 years old. He scored his first goal of the 2013–14 season against Parma in a 3–1 victory. He followed up the goal with two strikes in Roma's 3–0 away victory over Inter, helping the team maintain its 100% record after seven games. On 20 November he received the "Captain of captains" award by the association Editutto and Baker Tilly Revisa.
On 12 January 2014, Totti returned to the goal at the Stadio Olimpico in a 4–0 victory against Genoa. On 26 January, he scored again in a 3–1 win against Hellas Verona. On 14 February, the Roma captain was side-lined yet again for about a month after sustaining a bruised right buttock. He returned to the pitch on 17 March against Udinese, scoring the first goal of the match as he dragged his team to a 3–2 win. Eight days later, Totti celebrated 700 overall appearances with Roma against Torino. On 2 April, in the recovery of the match suspended in February, he scored his 20th career goal against Parma (a personal record) in a 4–2 victory. He finished the season with 8 goals (the last one scored in a 4–1 defeat against Catania) and 10 assists, which allowed him to win the award of the top assist-man of the 2013–14 Serie A season.
Prior to the start of the 2014–15 season, Totti had been the absolute star of Roma's pre-season friendlies. In the International Champions Cup, that was held in the USA in July and August, he scored from a penalty in a 3–2 defeat against Manchester United and, in the following match of the tournament, he scored the Roma's winning goal for 1–0 against Real Madrid at the Cotton Bowl, in Dallas. Moreover, in the last friendly matches of the season, Totti scored two goals in a 5–0 victory against Eltendorf, in Austria, and the opening goal from penalty in the 3–3 home draw against Fenerbahçe. On 30 September 2014, three days after his 38th birthday, Totti scored Roma's equaliser in a Champions League group stage draw at Manchester City, thus becoming the oldest scorer in the history of the competition; this historic goal has been named the matchday two goal of the week at the official website of UEFA and this was also Totti's 300th professional career goal. On 5 October 2014, Totti scored from penalty in a 3–2 away defeat to rivals Juventus. Two weeks later, he scored once again via penalty spot in a 3–0 home victory against Chievo. On 25 October, Totti scored the opening goal from a powerful and accurate free-kick from 25 meters in a 1–1 draw against CSKA Moscow, extending his record of oldest goalscorer in the history of the UEFA Champions League at 38 years and 59 days.
On 11 January 2015, Totti scored two goals against local rivals Lazio, making him the joint all-time top scorer in the Rome Derby in official club competitions, alongside Dino Da Costa, with 11 goals, as well as Serie A top scorer in the Rome Derby. On 22 February, he scored with a shot from the edge of the penalty area in a 1–1 draw against Hellas Verona. On 19 April, he scored the opening goal from a penalty kick in a 1–1 draw against Atalanta. On 9 May, Totti scored again from a penalty in a 2–1 away defeat to Milan, equalling Roberto Baggio for the record of the most goals scored in Serie A from penalties (68). On 31 May, in the final match-day of the 2014–15 season, he scored his 299th goal for Roma in a 2–1 home defeat to Palermo. Totti finished the season as Roma's top scorer with 10 goals in all competitions; this was the 7th time in which he had been the team's best scorer.
On his second league appearance of the 2015–16 Serie A season, Totti scored his 300th career club goal in all competitions with Roma in a 2–2 home draw with Sassuolo, on 20 September 2015. On 26 September 2015, the day before his 39th birthday, he sustained an injury, straining his right hip flexor in a 5–1 win over Carpi, ruling him out for 3 months. He returned to the pitch as a substitute in a 1–1 home draw against Milan, on 9 January 2016, equalling Gianluca Pagliuca as the third all-time highest appearance holder in Serie A history, with 592 appearances.
Totti first came into international prominence while playing in FIFA and UEFA youth tournaments. With the Italy under-16 side, under manager Sergio Vatta, Totti reached the final of the 1993 UEFA European Under-16 Championship in Turkey, Italy were defeated 1–0 by Poland as Totti missed the final due to suspension. Four months later, Totti played in 1993 FIFA U-17 World Championship in Japan and scored the only Italy's goal in that tournament as the Azzurrini were eliminated in group stage. Totti also scored in Italy’s 4–1 defeat to Spain in the final of the UEFA Under-18 Championship, in July 1995. He subsequently won the UEFA Under-21 Championship with Italy in 1996, under manager Cesare Maldini; in the final, he opened the scoring as the match ended in a 1–1 draw against the Spanish, although Italy were able to win the final on penalties. The following year, he also played a key role in helping Italy to win a gold medal at the 1997 Mediterranean Games, on home soil, scoring twice throughout the tournament. Thanks to his great contribution in these tournaments, Totti was later included in the all-time Under-21 EURO dream team in 2015.
After starring with the Azzurrini in Italy's Under-16, Under-19, and Under-21 sides, Totti earned his first senior cap for Italy under the recently appointed international manager Dino Zoff, during a 2–0 Euro 2000 qualifying victory against Switzerland, on 10 October 1998. Totti scored his first goal for Italy on 26 April 2000, in a 2–0 friendly win over Portugal, in Reggio Calabria. He scored his first brace for Italy in a 2006 FIFA World Cup Qualifying match, in a 4–3 home win over Belarus, on 13 October 2004. In total, Totti has made 58 appearances for Italy between 1998 and 2006, scoring 9 goals.
Italy went to Euro 2000 with Totti in excellent form; overall, he scored 2 goals and provided an assist during the tournament. His first goal of the tournament came against co-host nation Belgium in the first round, as Totti headed in Albertini's cross from a set-piece. His second goal of the tournament came against Romania in the quarter-finals, with an accurate strike following Fiore's assist. In Italy's semi-final shootout victory over co-hosts the Netherlands, Totti's confidently chipped penalty was named as one of the "magic moments" of the tournament.
Though Italy lost to defending World Cup Champions France 2–1 in extra time in the final, Totti was named the man of the match, and he started the play which led to Delvecchio's opening goal; Totti sent an unmarked Pessotto down the right wing with a back-heel pass, allowing him space to cross the ball into the area, where it was put into the net by Delvecchio. Later during the second half of the match, Totti provided two scoring opportunities for Alessandro Del Piero, which the Juventus forward was unable to convert. Totti was selected for the 22-man Team of the Tournament due to his performances throughout the European Championship.
2002 World Cup
After being handed the number 10 shirt and Italy's playmaking duties, much was expected of Totti in his début World Cup under manager Giovanni Trapattoni. Despite a promising start at the 2002 FIFA World Cup held in Japan/Korea, as he set-up Vieri's first goal in Italy's 2–0 opening win over Ecuador, disappointment followed however, with Totti failing to score or make a significant impact throughout the tournament. Despite helping to set up Vieri's goal in a disappointing and controversial 2–1 defeat to Croatia in Italy's second group match, also hitting the post from a free-kick, his lacklustre performances throughout the tournament were later criticised by the Italian media, in particular as he missed several scoring opportunities in Italy's 1–1 draw against Mexico in their final group match, as Italy narrowly qualified for the knockout stage.
Despite setting up Vieri's goal in Italy's second round defeat to co-hosts South Korea from a corner, his performance was once again criticised, in particular as during extra-time, he was sent off after being handed a controversial second yellow card by referee Byron Moreno for an alleged dive in the penalty area.
Although he was once again expected to be Italy's star player in the number-10 role, Totti acquired a measure of infamy at Euro 2004 after he spat at Danish midfielder Christian Poulsen in a goalless draw on 14 June 2004. He was subsequently banned until the semifinals, but never made it back to action and finished the competition scoreless due to Italy's elimination in the first round on direct encounters, following a three-way five point tie with Sweden and Denmark.
2006 World Cup
Despite injury troubles, Totti recovered in time to join the national team for their victorious 2006 World Cup campaign, in spite of not having had much match practice during his three months on the sidelines. Italy manager Marcello Lippi showed enormous faith in Totti, assuring him during his rehabilitation that his spot in the Azzurri World Cup team was secure and to focus on recuperating. This encouragement and show of faith fueled Totti's desire to work even harder to overcome what could have been a career-ending injury and make it to the World Cup against all odds (and much of the Italian media's opinion).
Totti did recuperate in time and played the entire time in Germany with metal plates in his ankle that had yet to be removed following the surgery. He was a key player in Marcello Lippi's team, playing in all seven games for Italy, including the victorious final against France. Throughout the tournament, he usually played as an attacking midfielder, behind strikers Luca Toni, Alberto Gilardino, Vincenzo Iaquinta, or Filippo Inzaghi, alongside Andrea Pirlo in a creative-midfield pairing. These players were supported defensively by Gattuso, Perrotta, and De Rossi in midfield. Totti, along with his team mate Pirlo, as well as Riquelme, Schweinsteiger, and Figo, finished the tournament with the most assists (4). Throughout the World Cup, Totti set up Pirlo's goal from a short corner in Italy's opening match against Ghana, Materazzi's goal from a corner in Italy's final group match against the Czech Republic, and two goals against Ukraine in the quarter-finals, those by Zambrotta and one of Toni's goals; Totti also scored a goal via an injury time penalty in Italy's 1–0 round-of-16 win over Australia on 26 June. In recognition of a successful tournament, Totti was selected for the 23-man All-Star Team.
Totti intended to retire from the Azzurri after the end of the World Cup, but reneged on his decision and remained undecided on his future for over a year, not being called up in the meantime. He made his retirement official on 20 July 2007, at the beginning of the 2007–08 Serie A season, due to recurring physical problems, and in order to focus solely on club play with Roma. Then-Italy coach, Roberto Donadoni attempted to get Totti to change his mind for the remaining Euro 2008 qualifiers but was not successful.
After the national team reunited with Marcello Lippi, Totti announced that he would play in the 2010 World Cup Finals in South Africa if he got called up. However, there was no official statement release from Totti or Lippi about a possible comeback. In the event, Totti was not named in the final squad, and Italy was subsequently eliminated, finishing last in their group, their worst ever group stage result in World Cup history. Diego Maradona and former national teammates Fabio Cannavaro and Gianluigi Buffon said one of the reasons for Italy's early exit is that the Azzurri lack creative players like Totti.
In March 2013, the former Italy coach, Cesare Prandelli stated that he would consider Totti's comeback for 2014 World Cup. In October 2013, Prandelli said: "Totti is in fantastic form. His condition right now does make you reflect. If the World Cup was around the corner, I would have no doubts and would absolutely call him up. But we will evaluate the player's condition one month prior to the World Cup." However, at the time of the choice of the final 23-man Italian squad for the World Cup, the Italy coach excluded the Roma striker, preferring to focus the team around younger players, receiving numerous criticisms by the entire Italian football movement. Among these, also former Brazilian international footballer Cafu, who also played for Roma and Milan, who revealed that he would have liked to see Totti competing for Italy at the World Cup in Brazil, and that he preferred the Roma captain over Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. Without Totti, Italy was eliminated in the first round for the second consecutive time after South Africa 2010, finishing third in their group.
Style of play
Throughout his long career at his hometown club, Roma, Totti has predominantly played as an offensive-midfield playmaker, or as a supporting or deep-lying forward, behind the main striker; only in the later years of his Roma career was he mainly employed as a main striker. Totti is capable of playing anywhere along the front-line, and has also been deployed as a winger or as a midfield playmaker under Zeman, and most notably as a false-9 under Spalletti and Garcia. While being a prolific goal-scorer, and an accurate finisher (he is currently the sixth highest goal scoring Italian in club competitions), he is also renowned for his technique, creativity, and ability to provide assists for his teammates, occasionally through his trademark use of the backheel. His role has at times been described as that of a hardworking, generous, quick and dynamic centre forward. During his time under Zeman, Totti underwent an athletic development: he undertook a muscle strengthening programme to adapt to the rhythms of 21st century football, gaining physical strength, stamina, fitness, and shooting power, to the detriment of some of his speed and agility.
Regarded as one of the greatest Italian players of all time, and by some as Italy's greatest player ever, Totti's principal characteristics are his vision, acceleration, ball control, dribbling, precise passing, and powerful and accurate shooting ability, from inside and outside the area, with either foot; he is also an accurate penalty kick and free kick taker. Totti has also performed the cucchiaio (chipped shot), which roughly translates to "spoon" in English, on several occasions, and has often used this gesture on penalties; one of the most famous instances in which Totti performed this type of penalty kick was in the shoot-out of Italy's Euro 2000 semi-final match against the Netherlands. One of his most famous lobbed goals is the one he scored against Inter, where he dribbled past Materazzi before chipping the ball over Julio Cesar; it was later named the best goal in Serie A of the 2005–06 season. He scored another notable goal using this technique against Lazio, in the 2002 Derby della Capitale, which ended in a 5–1 win for Roma. Because of his penchant for scoring goals using this particular gesture, the title of his 2006 autobiography Tutto Totti: Mo je faccio er cucchiaio (English: All about Totti: I'm gonna chip him now) references this technique, as well as the statement made to his Italy team mates before his memorable Euro 2000 semifinal shootout penalty against the Netherlands.
Totti is known for his exuberant and humorous goal celebrations. His most famous celebration took place on 11 April 1999 in the second Derby della Capitale of the 1998–99 season, in which he scored during the final minutes of the game and celebrated by flashing a T-shirt under his jersey, which read "Vi ho purgato ancora" ("I've purged you guys again"), in reference to events at the previous derby against Lazio on 29 November 1998 when Totti helped Roma come back from 3–1 down with an assist to Eusebio Di Francesco for 3–2 and finally a goal of his own for 3–3. Another derby goal against Lazio saw him take over a sideline camera and aim it at the Roma fans.
Totti's displayed numerous message T-shirts under his jersey over the years, including two for his wife "6 Unica" ("You're One of a kind") and "6 Sempre Unica" ("You're Still the One"), and a political one "Liberate Giuliana" ("Free Giuliana") in honor of Giuliana Sgrena, an Italian journalist kidnapped in 2005 by insurgents in Iraq (later freed). The most recent shirt's message was "Scusate il Ritardo" ("Sorry for the delay") which he flashed on 8 January 2012 in an apology to fans for his goal-scoring drought after scoring his first goal of the season versus Chievo.
As a tribute to his then-pregnant wife, Ilary Blasi, Totti imitated a childbirth scene by stuffing the ball under his shirt and lying on his back while his teammates extracted the ball. His current ritual of sucking his thumb after a goal began after his son was born and subsequently after the birth of his daughter. Blasi has revealed that Totti sucks his thumb also dedicating his celebration to her, and not only for their children. On 11 January 2015, after his 239th goal in Serie A, Totti came up with another historic goal celebration. Totti scored two goals against Lazio in the Derby della Capitale when Roma came back from 2–0 and after his second goal he took a selfie with Roma fans.
Totti's wife Ilary Blasi is a former showgirl who has been a co-host of Italia 1's hit show Le Iene since 2007. When the couple married on 19 June 2005 at the Basilica of Santa Maria in Aracoeli, their wedding was aired on television with the proceeds being donated to charity. They had their first child, Cristian, on 6 November 2005. Their second child, a daughter named Chanel, was born on 13 May 2007. The couple has often been referred to as the "Italian Beckhams" and their private lives are often speculated upon in Italian magazines and tabloids. Totti is a Roman Catholic.
Totti's brother Riccardo serves as his agent and manages many of his brand and business interests, under the name "Number Ten", including the Francesco Totti Academy, a football training school, and the Totti Soccer School, is a football camp for children with disabilities. Totti also owns a motorcycle racing team called Totti Top Sport.
Totti became a goodwill ambassador for UNICEF in 2003, and an ambassador for the FIFA/SOS Children's Villages in January 2006. As a fundraiser for a children's charity, he published two best-selling, self-effacing joke books containing jokes the locals often told about him and his teammates. Some of the jokes were filmed in short sketches featuring himself with good friends and national teammates Alessandro Del Piero, Gianluigi Buffon, Christian Vieri, Antonio Cassano, Marco Delvecchio, Alessandro Nesta and former national team coach Giovanni Trapattoni in a short show called La sai l'ultima di Totti. On the 16 January 2008 he appeared as “PaperTotti” in a famous Comic book. The proceeds of the subscriptions were given to charity. The Roma captain's official testimonial was a fund raising match between singers and celebrities played on the 12 May 2008 to help raise money for the construction of the “Campus Produttivo della Legalità e della Solidarietà” (Productive Campus of Legality and Solidarity). In 2009, Totti helped launch a new campaign promoting "Football Adopting Abandoned Children", which came about in collaboration with the ‘Friends of Children’ and the Association of Italian Players. In the project, he adopted a team of around 11 young Kenyans to play football in Nairobi, and then to coach them along the way. In 2015, Totti and several of his teammates took to the pitch for "Tennis with Stars" in the Foro Italico in Rome, an event to help disadvantaged children. Tennis players such as Novak Djokovic and Flavia Pennetta participated at the event.
Television, cinema and publicity
In 2002, Fiat principal executive Gianni Agnelli, a lifelong fan and ex-president of Juventus, chose Totti to publicize the launch of the new Stilo instead of a Juventus player. Having been signed to sportswear company Nike, Totti featured in Nike's "Secret Tournament" advertisement, directed by Terry Gilliam, in the buildup to the 2002 World Cup in Korea and Japan. He appeared alongside luminaries including Ronaldo, Ronaldinho, Luís Figo, Roberto Carlos and Hidetoshi Nakata, with former player Eric Cantona the tournament "referee".
Totti has featured in EA Sports' FIFA video game series; he starred on the cover of the Italian edition of FIFA 2002. He also featured on the cover of Pro Evolution Soccer 4 along with Thierry Henry and Italian referee Pierluigi Collina. Between 2005 and 2008 his sponsors changed to sportswear company Diadora and soft drink Pepsi Twist, with a commercial filmed in the camps of Trigoria by director Gabriele Muccino. Since May 2006, he has appeared in advertisements for telephone company Vodafone. In December 2006 Totti and his wife Ilary Blasi lent their voices to an Italian dubbing of an episode of the television series The Simpsons entitled Marge and Homer Turn a Couple Play, in which Totti voiced Buck Mitchell. In 2007 he appeared in the movie L'allenatore nel Pallone 2 in the role of a defense attorney. Since 2008 he has participated several times in the television program "C'è posta per te". in the second series of the Italian drama "Cesaroni", in the reality show Grande Fratello 8 and in an episode of "Paperissima". In September 2008 a collection of figurines dedicated to him appeared in newsstands in the Lazio region entitled "Francesco Totti, the captain". In 2009, Totti sent a message of support to Iranian youths during the 2009 Iranian presidential election protests. In February 2010, Totti was named an ambassador for online poker company Party Poker. In May 2010, Totti appeared alongside actor Russell Crowe in Rome to promote the special edition of the film Gladiator, celebrating the tenth year of the film's release. In December 2014, two murals of Totti, sponsored by Nike, were created in Rome. In 2014, the Swiss artist David Diehl painted Totti as one of 16 football icons most beloved by their fans. In 2015, France Football rated him one of the 10 best footballers in the world who are over the age of 36. In 2015, Totti's famous selfie celebration was included amongst the goal celebrations available for FIFA 16 and Pro Evolution Soccer 2016; he also took a selfie in the official trailer of the game on YouTube.
Correct as of 30 January 2016.
|Team||Season||Serie A||Coppa Italia||Europe1||Other
- Serie A : 593 appearances, 244 goals
- Coppa Italia : 55 appearances, 17 goals
- Supercoppa Italiana : 5 appearances, 1 goal
- UEFA Champions League : 55 appearances, 17 goals
- UEFA Europa League : 40 appearances, 21 goals
- FIFA World Cup : 11 appearances, 1 goal
- UEFA European Championship : 6 appearances, 2 goals
Correct as of 9 July 2006.
- Scores and results list Italy's goal tally first.
Correct as of 9 July 2006.
- Winners (5)
- Runner-up (16)
- Serie A (8): 2001–02, 2003–04, 2005–06, 2006–07, 2007–08, 2009–10, 2013–14, 2014–15
- Coppa Italia (5): 2002–03, 2004–05, 2005–06, 2009–10, 2012–13
- Supercoppa Italiana (3): 2006, 2008, 2010
- UEFA European Under-16 Championship: 1993
- UEFA European Under-18 Championship: 1995
- UEFA European Championship: 2000
- Guerin d'Oro (2): 1998, 2004
- Serie A Young Footballer of the Year: 1999
- UEFA Euro 2000 Final: Man of the Match
- UEFA Euro 2000: Team of the Tournament
- Serie A Footballer of the Year (2): 2000, 2003
- Serie A Italian Footballer of the Year (5): 2000, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2007
- ESM Team of the Year (3): 2000–01, 2003–04, 2006–07
- FIFA 100
- Serie A Goal of the Year (2): 2005, 2006
- 2006 FIFA World Cup All-Star Team
- Serie A Top Scorer: 2006–07
- European Golden Shoe: 2006–07
- USSI Silver Ball: 2007–08
- Golden Foot: 2010
- Premio Nazionale Carriera Esemplare "Gaetano Scirea": 2014
- Premio Internazionale Giacinto Facchetti: 2014
- All-time UEFA European Under-21 Championship dream team: 2015
- 2000 – 7th
- 2001 – 4th
- 2007 – 7th
- Serie A Active Leading Goalscorer: 244 goals
- Serie A Active Appearance Maker: 593 games
- Roma All-Time Leading Goalscorer: 300 goals
- Roma All-Time Leading Goalscorer in Serie A: 244 goals
- Roma All-Time Leading Goalscorer in UEFA Champions League: 17 goals
- Roma All-Time Leading Goalscorer in UEFA Europa League: 21 goals
- Roma All-Time Leading Goalscorer in UEFA Competitions: 38 goals
- Roma All-Time Appearance Maker: 748 games
- Roma All-Time Appearance Maker in Serie A: 593 games
- Roma All-Time Appearance Maker in UEFA Champions League: 55 games
- Roma All-Time Appearance Maker in UEFA Europa League: 40 games
- Roma All-Time Appearance Maker in UEFA competitions: 95 games
- UEFA Champions League oldest goalscorer: aged 38 years 59 days as of 25 November 2014[update]
- Serie A youngest club's captain: aged 22 years 34 days
- Rome Derby All-Time Leading Goalscorer in Serie A: 11 goals
- Most penalties scored in Serie A (alongside Roberto Baggio): 68 goals
- Most different teams scored against in Serie A (alongside Roberto Baggio and Alberto Gilardino): 38
- Tutte le barzellette su Totti. (Raccolte da me), Milano, Mondadori, 2003. ISBN 88-04-52337-9 (All the jokes about Totti. Collected by me)
- Le nuove barzellette su Totti. (Raccolte ancora da me), Milano, Mondadori, 2004. ISBN 88-04-52482-0 (The new jokes about Totti. Collected by me again)
- «Mo je faccio er cucchiaio». Il mio calcio, Milano, Mondadori, 2006. ISBN 88-04-55733-8 (I'm gonna chip him now. My football)
- Tutto Totti, Milano, Mondadori, 2006. ISBN 9788804567530 (All about Totti)
- La mia vita, i miei gol (book + DVD), Milano, Mondadori, 2007. ISBN 88-04-57241-8 (My life, my goals)
- Quando i bambini fanno "ahó" (book + DVD), Milano, Mondadori, 2009. ISBN 88-04-59004-1 (When the children shout "Ahó")
- E mo' te spiego Roma. La mia guida all'antica Roma, Milano, Mondadori, 2012. ISBN 8804624019 (And Now I Explain Rome to You. My Guide to Ancient Rome)
- Roma 10. In giro per Roma col Capitano, Milano, Mondadori, 2014. ISBN 978-88-04-64042-4 (Roma 10. Around Rome with the Captain)
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- Fernando Acitelli, Francesco Totti. Il tribuno di Porta Latina, Arezzo, Limina, 2002. ISBN 88-86713-79-7 (Francesco Totti. The tribune of Porta Latina)
- Mario Sconcerti, La differenza di Totti, Arezzo, Limina, 2004. ISBN 88-88551-45-X (The difference of Totti)
- Francesco Bovaio, con Cristiano Ditta, Francesco Totti. Semplicemente numero dieci, Milano, Giunti Editore, 2006. ISBN 88-09-04780-X (Francesco Totti. Simply number ten)
- Massimo Cecchini, Francesco Totti. Vita, parole e imprese dell'ultimo gladiatore, Roma, Aliberti, 2009. ISBN 88-74244-93-2 (Totti. Life, words and feats of the last gladiator)
- Tonino Cagnucci, Francesco Totti. dai politici al cuore, Roma, Limina, 2010. ISBN 88-60410-56-8 (Francesco Totti. From politicians to heart)
- Gianluca Tino, L'invasione degli UltraTotti, Roma, Eraclea, 2010. ISBN 88-88771-22-0 (The invasion of UltraTotti)
- Francesca Spaziani Testa, Francesco Totti minuto per minuto, Firenze-San Casciano V.P, Castelvecchi, 2012. ISBN 88-76156-85-2 (Francesco Totti minute by minute)
- Francesco Costantini, Totteide. (Poema epico), Roma, Imprimatur, 2013. ISBN 88-68300-34-6 (Totteide. Epic poem)
|Wikiquote has quotations related to: Francesco Totti|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Francesco Totti.|
- Official website
- A.S. Roma profile
- Lega Serie A profile
- ESPN Profile
- FIGC national team archive (Italian)
- Francesco Totti – FIFA competition record
- Francesco Totti – UEFA competition record