De Rossi thanks Totti and 'every Roma fan' in emotional farewell letter

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The World Cup winner is leaving his home-town club at the end of his contract, but has paid homage to those who have brought him to this point

Daniele De Rossi is bidding an emotional farewell to Roma after 18 years at his home-town club, with fellow club icon Francesco Totti among those he will be eternally grateful to.

At 35 years of age, the World Cup winner is preparing to leave Stadio OIimpico at the end of his contract.

He will not be hanging up his boots as a one-club man, with the intention being to play on, but those in the Italian capital will forever hold a special place in his heart.

In an open letter published on the club’s official website ahead of his final outing against Parma on Sunday, De Rossi said: “Please, let me say thank you to everyone at Roma that I came to know:

“The Sensi family, and President Pallotta.

“All the women and men that have worked, and continue to work, at Trigoria.

“The coaches that shaped me; all of them – without exception - taught me something important.

“The medical staff that always took care of me; and Damiano, without whom I would certainly have made fewer appearances for this club.

“My teammates, the part of the job I always enjoyed the most – they are my family. That daily routine, those times in the changing room at Trigoria, will be the thing I miss most of all.

“Bruno, who saw something special in me and brought me into this club’s fantastic academy. It was there, one morning in August, that I first met Simone and Mancio – we have been friends ever since, and will be for the rest of our lives.

“Thank you Davide, I know you will be alongside me for the rest of my life too.

“Thank you to Francesco. The captain’s armband I wore was inherited from the arm of a brother, a great captain and the most incredible footballer I have ever seen wear this shirt. Not everyone gets to play alongside their idol for 16 years. Now, with respect, I will pass this armband on to Alessandro. Another brother, one that I know is equally worthy of the honour.

“Thank you to mum and dad, for instilling in me two values that I have carried with me every single day: to never do to someone else something you would not want them to do to you, and to always offer a hand to those in trouble.

“Thank you to Ostia; to its people and its coast. You helped raise me as a child, you spurred me on as a teenager, and you welcomed me back as an adult.

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“Thank you also to those who supported me - and suffered with me - within the walls of our home: without Gaia, Olivia, Noah and especially Sarah I would be half the man I am today.

“Thank you to every Roma fan, my fans. Today, at least, I’ll allow myself to call you ‘my fans’ – because I was one of you, out there on the pitch, and the love you have always shown me helped me to keep on doing that. You are all the reason why I chose this city, this life, time and time again. Sunday will be the 616th time I make that choice, the right choice.

“No-one will ever love you more than I do.”

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