Given the rough and tumble nature with which he plays the game, with which he has always played the game, it was always likely that Daniele De Rossi's career would, at some point, be waylaid by serious injury. That it's taken nearly 20 years for those accumulated slings and arrows of a life spent bombarding from box-to-box all across the Italian peninsula and throughout the whole of Europe is testament to De Rossi's strength and character, not to mention his meticulous training and preparation. However, as we all know, time waits for no man and it appears as though the fates have finally caught up to our dear old DDR.
Initially sidelined with a foot injury, De Rossi later added a balky knee to his growing list of ailments, which have kept him out of action for nearly three months now, and in the time since his last appearance, October 28th against Napoli, Roma have struggled, collecting 15 of a possible 27 points.
Now, I'm not suggesting there is a causal relationship there, but Roma are generally better when De Rossi is in the picture, plus when we consider the additional injury to Lorenzo Pellegrini during that span, Roma's midfield has been extremely taxed for energy, particularly at that double pivot where Steven Nzonzi and Bryan Cristante have logged some serious minutes over the past few months. Granted, this is less of a concern with Cristante than it is for the 30-year-old Nzonzi, who played all summer during the World Cup, but our favorite maple syrup loving midfielder has logged 11 straight full 90s, which, even at his young age, is bound to catch up with him at some point.
All of which brings us to De Rossi's ongoing recovery. Diagnosed with lesions and/or cysts in his meniscus, De Rossi has opted (for the time being) to forgo surgery, preferring instead to train with physiotherapist Damiano Stefanini. De Rossi's commitment recovery was so great that he skipped his family holiday trip to train at Trigoria, and has only now gotten to the point where he's working on running and/or field drills. Suffice it to say, this is no minor injury.
While there is still no timetable for his return, even as a bit player De Rossi can help Roma greatly in their quest for fourth place this spring. However, with no discernible ETA for De Rossi, Roma are looking towards the transfer market for help in the midfield, scouting the likes of Empoli's Israel Benancer and Bologna's Godfred Donsah, who has yet to play this season due to his own injury woes.
Roma has always needed Daniele De Rossi, but with the possible calamity that is missing next season's Champions League hanging over their heads, Roma really needs De Rossi right now.