Departing Totti reveals Conte had agreed to take Roma job

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The Giallorossi legend confirms he held talks with the former Chelsea boss who agreed to move to the Italian capital before having a change of heart

Antonio Conte agreed to become Roma's new coach before instead taking charge of Inter, according to Francesco Totti.

Giallorossi icon Totti announced his departure from the club, ending a 30-year association, at an explosive news conference on Monday.

The former Italy star, regarded among the greatest players in Roma history, fired a broadside at controversial club president James Pallotta as he stepped down as a director.

The 42-year-old says Pallotta has been looking to sideline established Roma figures during his time in the Italian capital and claims he was “stabbed in the back,” prompting his controversial departure.

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Totti follows former teammate and fellow club legend Daniele De Rossi out of the Stadio Olimpico, the midfielder having been released at the end of his contract after 18 seasons in the Italian capital.

Earlier this month Roma confirmed Shakhtar Donetsk boss Paulo Fonseca as their new head coach. The 46-year-old succeeded Claudio Ranieri, who returned to the club to replace Eusebio Di Francesco on a short-term deal in May.

But Totti revealed Roma had sealed a deal with former Chelsea boss Conte to take over, only for the Italian to then choose Serie A rivals Inter instead.

"I spoke with Antonio Conte: he had given his 'okay' to become Roma coach," Totti told reporters.  "Then, he went to Inter."

Maurizio Sarri was also linked with Roma, with the Italian having since taken charge of Juventus after spending just one season in the Premier League with Chelsea.

But Totti denied having held talks with the 60-year-old, whose Napoli side finished second behind Juve in 2017-18.

"I never contacted Maurizio Sarri. I don't know what his objectives or evaluations were, just that Sarri was a favourite of Baldini," Totti added.

"Of course, he's a great coach who would have done well here, but he was under contract with Chelsea. Anyway, this is irrelevant. We should talk about the present.

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"Fonseca has to find an environment that is relaxed, with a clear path ahead of him.

"From what I've seen, he is a fine coach who can do well and was very impressive at Shakhtar."