De Rossi to leave Roma after 18 years but will not be retiring as a one-club man

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Daniele De Rossi Roma 2018-19
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The long-serving midfielder, who has spent his entire career to date with his home-town club, will be taking on a new challenge this summer

Daniele De Rossi is to bring an 18-year career at Roma to a close this summer, but he will not be following the lead of Francesco Totti and retiring as a one-club man.

The Serie A outfit have confirmed that the 35-year-old midfielder will be leaving when his current contract comes to an end.

An iconic presence in the Italian capital, he has spent his entire career to date with the Giallorossi, taking in over 600 appearances.

De Rossi is, however, about to sever ties with his home-town club.

He has been on Roma’s books since joining their youth ranks in 2000, with Totti – the man he inherited the captain’s armband from – the only player to have figured in more games for the Serie A outfit.

Fellow World Cup winner Totti brought his time at Stadio Olimpico to a close in 2017, and subsequently hung up his boots, but another long-serving stalwart is intending to play on.

Roma president Jim Pallotta told the club’s official website: “For 18 years, Daniele has been the beating heart of AS Roma’s team.

“From his debut in 2001 to taking on the responsibility of the captain’s armband, he always represented the Roma fans on the pitch with pride as he established himself as one of the best midfielders in Europe.

“We will all shed tears when he pulls on the Giallorossi shirt for the last time against Parma but we respect his desire to prolong his playing career - even if, at almost 36, it will be away from Rome. 

“On behalf of everyone at Roma, I’d like to thank Daniele for his incredible dedication to this club and ensure him that our doors will remain open for him to return to the club in a new role whenever he wants.”

During his time with Roma, De Rossi formed part of a Serie A title-winning squad in 2000-01, and had two successful Coppa Italia campaigns.

He will leave with a standing safely secured among the all-time greats, but is ready to take on a new challenge.

Roma said in a statement announcing his departure after a final day showdown with Parma: “De Rossi will not be retiring from professional football at the end of the current season. The 35-year-old plans to pursue a new adventure away from Rome.

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“As well as his record-breaking Roma exploits, De Rossi has also enjoyed a brilliant international career.

“He remains the fourth-most capped player in Italy history, with 117 appearances, and represented the Azzurri at eight major international tournaments – famously lifting the World Cup, alongside Roma teammates Totti and Simone Perrotta, in 2006.

“Nevertheless, the combative, inspiring midfielder will always remain synonymous with Roma, the club he has unfailingly represented with both class and distinction throughout his playing career.”