Francesco Totti threatens to quit Roma

 

An outburst from talismanic striker Francesco Totti, who said he would think about leaving the club after 19 seasons, has provided the latest twist to the soap opera at ambitious AS Roma.

Roma, who visit Napoli in Serie A on Sunday, quickly played down Totti's comments which followed criticism of his missed penalty in last Monday's 1-1 draw at home to Juventus.

Sporting manager Walter Sabatini praised Totti for showing his emotion and said the 35-year-old's comments were made in the heat of the moment.

"I don't like calm waters, he has been hurt by the criticism," he told Sky Sports Italia. "He has been spontaneous and has done the right thing by saying it.

"Totti's not going anywhere, he is Roma," Sabatini added. "He will continue to represent Roma for many years."

Totti, who has often been relegated to the substitutes' bench by coach Luis Enrique, said: "If I'm the problem, then I'll think about (leaving).

"It's not because of the club or the coach or my team mates, I dislike things a few fans have said against me.

"If things carry on in this way, I will continue to think about it."

Roma, taken over in April by a consortium led by United States businessman Thomas Di Benedetto, have struggled to live up to expectations which were heightened by a summer spending spree and Luis Enrique's comment that he wanted them to play like Barcelona.

Instead, they have managed five wins in 14 Serie A outings, dropping to 10th with 18 points and 12 behind leaders Juventus.

Luis Enrique, who took over in the close season, quickly courted controversy by leaving Totti on the bench and the storm only subsided after the striker issued a statement asking for backing for the coach.

There was further trouble when leading scorer Pablo Osvaldo lashed out at teenager Erik Lamela after a match at Udinese and was suspended for one game by the club.

Under pressure Luis Enrique, whose future has already been questioned, then lost his temper and swore at journalists in a media conference before the Juventus game.

Unbeaten Juventus, level at the top on 30 points with surprise package Udinese, have a chance to go clear when they host Novara while their rivals have a much more difficult match at Lazio.

Lazio, winners of their last two games, are level on 28 points in third place with AC Milan, who should win at home to a Siena team who have taken one point from their last 15 and are only two points above the relegation zone.

Inter Milan, who climbed from 15th to sixth after two wins in the last week, host a Cesena side who were winless in their first 10 outings but have won three of their last four.

Reuters

Suggested Topics
News
More than 90 years of car history are coming to an end with the abolition of the paper car-tax disc
newsThis and other facts you never knew about the paper circle - completely obsolete tomorrow
Arts and Entertainment
Gay and OK: a scene from 'Pride'
filmsUS film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
News
people'I’d rather have Fred and Rose West quote my characters on childcare'
Arts and Entertainment
Hilary North's 'How My Life Has Changed', 2001
booksWell it was good enough for Ancient Egyptians and Picasso...
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Magic roundabouts: the gyratory system that has excited enthusiasts in Swindon
motoringJust who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?
Sport
footballManchester City 1 Roma 1: Result leaves Premier League champions in danger of not progressing
Life and Style
The new Windows 10 Start Menu
tech
Travel
Bruce Chatwin's novel 'On the Black Hill' was set at The Vision Farm
travelOne of the finest one-day walks you could hope for - in Britain
News
Kim Jong Un gives field guidance during his inspection of the Korean People's Army (KPA) Naval Unit 167
newsSouth Korean reports suggest rumours of a coup were unfounded
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
The magic of roundabouts

Lords of the rings

Just who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?
Why do we like making lists?

Notes to self: Why do we like making lists?

Well it was good enough for Ancient Egyptians and Picasso...
Hong Kong protests: A good time to open a new restaurant?

A good time to open a new restaurant in Hong Kong?

As pro-democracy demonstrators hold firm, chef Rowley Leigh, who's in the city to open a new restaurant, says you couldn't hope to meet a nicer bunch
10 best children's nightwear

10 best children's nightwear

Make sure the kids stay cosy on cooler autumn nights in this selection of pjs, onesies and nighties
Manchester City vs Roma: Five things we learnt from City’s draw at the Etihad

Manchester City vs Roma

Five things we learnt from City’s Champions League draw at the Etihad
Martin Hardy: Mike Ashley must act now and end the Alan Pardew reign

Trouble on the Tyne

Ashley must act now and end Pardew's reign at Newcastle, says Martin Hardy
Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

Last chance to see...

The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

Truth behind teens' grumpiness

Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

Hacked photos: the third wave

Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?
Royal Ballet star dubbed 'Charlize Theron in pointe shoes' takes on Manon

Homegrown ballerina is on the rise

Royal Ballet star Melissa Hamilton is about to tackle the role of Manon
Education, eduction, education? Our growing fascination with what really goes on in school

Education, education, education

TV documentaries filmed in classrooms are now a genre in their own right
It’s reasonable to negotiate with the likes of Isis, so why don’t we do it and save lives?

It’s perfectly reasonable to negotiate with villains like Isis

So why don’t we do it and save some lives?