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Totti: “Why should I retire?”

The Eternal City legend scored a stoppage time winner to lead Roma to a 3-2 win over Sampdoria in a game interrupted by torrential rainstorms.

Totti: “Why should I retire?”
AS Roma via Getty Images

There are some players – very few, mind you – that we’ve simply run out of superlatives with which to describe. One of them is Francesco Totti.

Totti wins it for Roma

Just 16 days short of his 40th birthday, Roma’s number 10 demonstrated once again just how talented he is, leading his side to a stoppage time win over Sampdoria. It was an afternoon to remember; the match will also be remembered for the torrential hailstorm that forced play to be interrupted for over an hour.

The interruption actually helped Luciano Spalleti’s side who went into the half-time break 2-1 down. Mohamed Salah had given the home side the lead after just 8 minutes, heading home a tremendous cross from Diego Perotti, but goals from Luis Muriel and Fabio Quagliarella turned the game on its head.

Totti came on at half-time and turned the game around for Roma
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Totti came on at half-time and turned the game around for RomaAFP

The weather stoppage gave Roma new life

The rain and flooding brought new life into Roma, who used the break to bring on Totti for El Shaarawy. Until now, Il Capitano hadn’t played a minute of football this season, reduced to the role of helpless spectator as his side crashed out of the Champions League to Porto. If he was rusty, he didn’t show it. Just after the hour mark he set up Edin Dzeko for the equalizer, threading the ball through the defence and leaving the Bosnian clear to finish past Emiliano Viviano.

When it looked all but certain that the spoils would be shared, Dzeko won a stoppage time penalty after making the most of Milan Skriniar’s challenge. Totti said after the game that it “was the first time I’ve ever felt afraid of taking a penalty,” but he didn’t let his nerves get the better of him, sending Viviano the wrong way.

The Roma captain kept his cool to slot home a stoppage-time winner from the penalty spot
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The Roma captain kept his cool to slot home a stoppage-time winner from the penalty spotAFP

Totti just 25 short of the all-time goals record

Totti’s goal was his 249th in Serie A, a total that puts him just 25 short of Silvio Piola’s all-time record. Could he be tempted to stay on after this season in an attempt to break the record?

'Why should I retire?'

“The peace that my family brings me really helps me in everything I do,” he said to the press after the game. “If I feel like that, then why should I retire?

You know what, Francesco? You’re right. Don’t do it. Football will be grateful.

Totti: “Why should I retire?”
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