After months of speculation, in fighting, conspiracy theories and pure, simple, unadulterated agony, our long international nightmare is over, Francesco Totti has signed a new one year deal with Roma, officially ending the speculation regarding his playing future. While financial details of the deal haven't yet been released, Totti will officially return for his 25th and final season in a Roma shirt.
Speaking to the club's official website, Totti expressed his pleasure with the deal, saying "It's a fantastic feeling, I always wanted to end my career having only worn one shirt - the Roma one - and I think I earned it." Indeed he has, take away the two decades plus of excellence and Totti still earned this renewal off the back of a handful of appearances during the stretch run this season, where he bailed Roma out several times with timely assists and/or last minute goals.
The meritorious nature of this deal was not lost on club President James Pallotta either.
It's a nice coincidence that on the anniversary of the foundation of AS Roma, Totti has signed a new playing contract. Nobody has scored more goals or played more games for this club than Totti, and we're honoured that he'll continue playing for another season.
He's earned this renewal, and we hope this last season on the pitch will coincide with the beginning of a new era of success for Roma.
The deal also includes, as was heavily speculated throughout this ordeal, plans for Totti's post playing career. Included in this contract is a six-year term as technical director, a gig Totti seems particularly excited about:
I'm delighted, because after this year as a player I have another six as a director. As I've always told the president and the club as a whole, I preferred to have a specific role such as technical director. They've agreed to that and I'm very grateful for it.
It's impossible to say just how close this relationship was to truly fracturing, and Totti indeed spoke about the need for unity during this press conference, but let's just all be thankful that cooler heads prevailed on either side of the table. Totti got his much deserved playing contract, while Pallotta and friends not only retain an excellent player, but stand to profit from what is sure to be an extravagant retirement tour.
Francesco Totti always deserved to dictate his own exit, and thanks to the new gods and the old, he will receive it and for one final season, we'll be able to bask in our old axiom
We Have Francesco Totti and You Don't.