Herald Sun

Totti the star on any stage

- DAVID DAVUTOVIC david.davutovic@news.com.au

HE is one of the few re­main­ing one-club icons in world football, and Francesco Totti still pos­sesses all the class that has kept him at the top for two decades.

Totti led a star-stud­ded Roma side in its first Mel­bourne train­ing ses­sion at Lakeside Oval last night, and showed he still has the qual­i­ties that have won him a World Cup and a Serie A ti­tle with a deft touch and swag­ger to boot.

Two months shy of his 39th birth­day, Totti re­mains the head­line act of a Roma side that fin­ished sec­ond (for the eighth time in his ca­reer) be­hind Ju­ven­tus.

Join­ing him for the first time in a Roma out­fit was Daniel De Silva, the brighteyed Aussie teenager hop­ing to suc­ceed abroad.

It was the stuff of dreams last night as De Silva took his first steps to ful­fill­ing his dreams.

With the Roma squad ar­riv- ing in Mel­bourne on Wed­nes­day night De Silva, who joined the squad from WA hav­ing spent the past two sea­sons with Perth Glory, only met his new team­mates yesterday.

Al­most 21 years Totti’s ju­nior, De Silva would have pinched him­self when he ended his maiden ses­sion with the team play­ing on the same side as him in a 20-minute nine-ver­sus-nine match.

Star at­tacker Gerv­inho and Brazil vet­eran Maicon were also on De Silva’s side, as half the play­ers com­pleted their first ses­sion with a rea­son­ably in­tense game as their team­mates com­pleted a se­ries of run-throughs.

Rudi Gar­cia’s side will have a fi­nal hitout to­day, be­fore open­ing its In­ter­na­tional Cham­pi­ons Cup ac­count to­mor­row night against Real Madrid at the MCG.

 ?? Pic­ture: WAYNE LUDBEY ?? Francesco Totti con­trols pro­ceed­ings at Roma’s first ses­sion last night.
Pic­ture: WAYNE LUDBEY Francesco Totti con­trols pro­ceed­ings at Roma’s first ses­sion last night.

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