Milan // Ageing Roma icon Francesco Totti has been given backing from Italy's Olympic Committee as he seeks to earn a final year's deal at the club amid interest from Major League Soccer.
One-club man Totti is in his 23rd, and possibly last season at the Serie A side, who have been hesitant to offer the legendary playmaker a final year’s contract.
At 39 years old, Totti’s appearances for the Giallorossi, currently third in the league, have been few and far between in what has been an injury-hit campaign.
Despite interest in his services from MLS side New York Cosmos, among other clubs around the world, Totti is believed to want to bring the curtain down with the club he has stayed faithful to throughout his storied professional career.
Totti’s hopes of earning a final year’s deal were boosted recently when he came off the bench to score late, crucial goals for Roma as they continue their bid to snatch the league’s second automatic Champions League qualifying spot from Napoli.
Italian Olympic Commitee (CONI) chief Giovanni Malago, for one, believes Roma owe it to the legendary forward to bow to his wishes.
“Totti is an amazing story, a fairy tale that is almost too good to be true. For those who love sport, football and Roma it’s a great story. Francesco is a modern day hero,” said Malago.
“I’ve always had a soft spot for him. If it’s in the club’s professional interests, I think it makes sense (to give him a contract).”
Roma president James Pallotta has been keen to push Totti into a director or ambassador’s role at the club, although reports in Italy suggest the American could be swayed by recent events.
In the meantime, Totti’s age would be no problem for many interested clubs around the world, says New York Cosmos coach Giovanni Savarese.
He admitted to Gazzetta dello Sport that contact had been made with the Roma star.
“We’ve had contact. Besides, any coach in the world would be interested in player like Totti,” Savarese said.
“His age shouldn’t be an issue, it’s what he brings to the team.”
Follow us on Twitter @NatSportUAE
Like us on Facebook at facebook.com/TheNationalSport