clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Chiesa di Totti Library & Reference Guide

Ever wonder what TGIP means? Or who Captain Caveman is? We've got all your CdT lingo in one convenient place now.

Opening of the Stefan-Heym-Forum Photo by Hendrik Schmidt/picture alliance via Getty Images

Chiesa di Totti is like any other community or subculture; we have our own rules (written or otherwise), our own norms, and yes, even our own language. CdT planted it's roots nearly 15 years ago as a virtual discussion between three far flung Roma fans, and it didn't take long for that micro community to develop and grow into the place we all know and love today.

And like any other community or enclave, we've developed our own colloquialisms, analogies, acronyms and slang terms; all of which can be a bit confusing to new community members.

So, in case you're new around here or just need a refresher, we've got you covered. Welcome to the official Chiesa di Totti Library and Reference Guide. Consider this a living document that will cover all the nick names, acronyms and idioms we've developed (and continue to develop) over the past decade and a half.

If we missed any, please let me know!


FC Porto v AS Roma - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: Second Leg Photo by Octavio Passos/Getty Images


Common nickname for Daniele De Rossi, Roma midfielder (2001-2019).


Common nickname for Eusebio Di Francesco, Roma midfielder (1997-2001) and manager (2017-2019).


Grumpy Old Man River was an affectionate moniker we slapped on Christian Panucci during his latter days with Roma (2001-2009). Even as he advanced through his mid to late thirties, you could bank on Panucci for 25 to 30 appearances each season. Panucci left Roma in 2009 and one could argue they’re still trying to replace him.


Common nickname for Julio Sergio Bertagnoli, Roma goalkeeper (2006-2013).


Common nickname for Pablo Daniel Osvaldo, Roma forward (2011-2013).


Common nickname for Stephan El Shaarawy, Roma forward (2016-2019).


Common nickname for The Friedkin Group, Roma's new owners.


The Grand Imperial Poobah is none other than Luciano Spalletti, Roma's manager for two non-consecutive stints between 2005-2009 and 2016-2017. Poobah in the strictest sense means one who holds multiple positions of power and/or a pompous, arrogant leader. Draw your own conclusions.


You Only Live Once. We took this millennial saying and applied it to Zdenek Zeman's kick-offs, where Roma would often have every single outfield player lined up at midfield.


Common nickname for Zdenek Zeman, Roma manager (1997-1999, 2012).

Axioms, Idioms & Sayings

AS Roma v AC Spezia - TIM Cup Photo by Paolo Bruno/Getty Images

A Garcia Special

Any 1-1 draw, especially if Roma blew a one-goal lead. This saying sprang to life in the latter days of Rudi Garcia's tenure with Roma (2013-2016). Towards the end of Garcia's managerial stint, Roma had a penchant for playing to draws, particularly 1-1 draws. A Garcia Special is applicable to any draw, but is best saved for matches in which Roma conceded late equalizers.

Night Moves

Any last minute transfer made by Roma's various directors of sport, but particularly Walter Sabatini.

Roma Cares

Used sarcastically, Roma Cares could be applied to any situation in which Roma seemed to be helping their opponents, inadvertently or otherwise.

Roma Happened

This is perhaps the most common saying in CdT history, and as such it's hard to precisely define; Roma Happened can encapsulate last minute defeats, penalties (justified or not), failed transfers, ill-advised transfers, injuries, stadium delays, unsightly neck tattoos, torn ACLs. Literally anything bad or unfortunate falls under the Roma Happened purview—use it with caution.

Taddei Was a Good Day

Take a cue from the famous Ice Cube song, Taddei Was a Good Day was used to cover any match, moment or development that involved former Roma utility man Rodrigo Taddei.

The House That Totti Built

A relatively new descriptor for the Stadio della Roma, the club's still-to-be-built new stadium. Taking a cue from the original Yankee Stadium, which was affectionately known as “The House That Ruth Built” because of Babe Ruth's importance to the Yankees, who may not have otherwise been in position to build a new ground without him, we put a Roma bent on this nickname. Roma wouldn't be the club they are without Totti's influence, so it's only fitting.

The Romaverse

Pretty self-explanatory. The Romaverse is an all-encompassing term for anything related to the club and fanbase.

We Are All Bren

I wish I could claim credit for this one, but I'm not that self-absorbed. This saying came to existence circa 2013 when readers tended to assume that I wrote every single piece on the site and has since taken on new life; use it as sort of a catch all for community trends with no clear origin/creator.

We're Not Selling Alisson

Used derisively to describe any unfulfilled promise from former club owner James Pallotta.


Claudio Villa Archive




  • Gabriel Batistuta, former Roma forward (2000-2003).

Brazilian Don Draper

  • Alisson Becker, former Roma goalkeeper (2016-2018) who bore a resemblance to Mad Men character Don Draper.

Captain Caveman

  • Federico Fazio, particularly when he's sporting a beard. Due to his stature, gait and style of play, Fazio had a caveman-like look on the pitch.

Capitano Futuro

  • Daniele De Rossi
  • Alessandro Florenzi (to a lesser extent)
  • Lorenzo Pellegrini (to a lesser extent)
  • Giada Greggi (to a lesser extent)


  • Erik Lamela, former Roma forward (2011-2013)

Copy & Paste

  • Panagiotis Tachtsidis, former Roma midfielder (2012-2013), whose name was impossible to spell from memory.

Crockett & Tubbs

  • Used to describe the duo of Philippe Mexes and Juan


  • Used to describe any goal/assist combination of Mattia Destro and Gervinho.


  • Marco Cassetti, former Roma defender (2006-2012). Cassetti = Drawers in Italian.


  • Francesco Totti. Self-explanatory.

Greece Lightning

  • Kostas Manolas, former Roma defender (2014-2019). He's Greek and fast. They're not all brilliant.


  • Marquinhos, former Roma defender (2012-2013)

Italian David Duchovny

  • Antonio Mirante due to his resemblance to the X-Files and Californication star.


  • Juan, former Roma defender (2007-2012)

Lil’ Totti

  • Cristian Totti


  • Manuela Giugliano


  • Henrikh Mkhitaryan

Mr. Right

  • Mattia Destro, Roma forward (2012-2015). Destro = right in Italian.


No Pants

  • Mirko Vucinic, Roma forward (2006-2011), due to his penchant for removing his shorts after scoring a big goal.


  • Stefano Okaka, Roma forward (2005-2012)


  • David Pizarro, Roma midfielder (2006-2012)


  • Adrian Pit, Roma midfielder (2007-2010) Pit was pronounced as “piz”.


  • David Pizarro, Roma midfielder (2006-2012)


  • Marquinhos, due to the fact that, when he was signed by Roma, they already had a player named Marquinho.


  • Juan Jesus, stemming from his claim that his name is pronounced with an ‘r’ sound.


  • Marquinho, former Roma midfielder from 2012-2015


  • Chris Smalling

Tammy Two Goals

  • Given to Tammy Abraham, Roma striker (2021-present), for his proclivity to score in bunches.

The Apple

  • Erik Lamela, former Roma forward (2011-2013). La Mela = The apple in Italian.

The Bosnian Batistuta

  • Edin Dzeko

The Kid

  • Nicolo Zaniolo

The Man From Mozambique

  • Paulo Fonseca

The Pau Patrol

  • The defensive unit in front of Pau Lopez (Roger Ibañez, Max Kumbulla, Gianluca Mancini and Chris Smalling)

The Predator

  • Gervinho, former Roma forward (2013-2016). With his headband and long hair flowing in the wind, he looked a bit like The Predator.

The Washing Machine

Willy VQ

  • William Vainqueur, former Roma midfielder (2015-2016)


This reference guide will expand as we add new nicknames, phrases, and idioms to our collective vernacular, so stay tuned.