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The defender has been hailed in the Italian press after reportedly being lowered on a rope in order to lift the girl to safety after the accident at a restaurant

The word 'hero' is thrown around the world of football with alarming frequency nowadays - but in the case of Lazio's Luciano Zauri, it's more than deserved.

Reports in Italy have revealed that the veteran defender, in true Lassie fashion, rescued a young girl who was trapped down a well outside a restaurant near Ponte Milvio.

But this was no ordinary youngster: this happened to be the granddaughter of Juventus and Roma legend Zbigniew Boniek, now the president of the Polish FA.

According to La Reppublica, the seven-year-old fell through a temporary cover into the well while checking a mirror in the bathroom of the restaurant, and Zauri agreed to be lowered down on a rope in order to pluck the girl from her misfortune and hoist her to safety.

Why there was a poorly-covered manhole in the bathroom of a restaurant is perhaps a discussion best left for health and safety officers, but thankfully the girl escaped from her ordeal with only minor bruising (and hopefully a few Euros off the bill).

The 35-year-old Zauri was seemingly not available for comment, presumably as he donned his cape and mask and sped off into the night in search of more damsels in distress.