Not that they really needed our help, but for the past year or so, we've been making the case for Roma to be considered among the truly elite clubs of Serie A Femminile. Thanks to a series of shrewd signings and trades over the past 18 months—including landing up-and-coming manager Alessandro Spugna from Empoli last summer—Head of Women's Football Betty Bavagnoli has transformed Roma from an also-ran to a legitimate title contender, as evidenced by the club's current eleven-match unbeaten streak.
While they haven't yet been able to unseat Juventus at the top of the league table, the margins between the two clubs is now so small as to be negligible. And Roma's ascent up the Serie A Femminile ladder hasn't gone unnoticed by the player's association, who earlier today unveiled a host of awards from the 2020-2021 season, including their team of the year, which included several familiar faces to Giallorosse supporters.
While there was no formal ceremony, this morning the Italian Footballer's Association (or Associazione Italiana Calciatori, if you prefer the original Italian form) unveiled their 2020-2021 team of the season, one that included five Roma players—well, four if we're being technical. Joining full-back and club captain Elisa Bartoli are defender Elena Linari, winger Annamaria Serturini, midfielder Manuela Giugliano, and forward Benedetta Glionna, who was technically being recognized for the work she did with Empoli last season.
And a few of Roma's honorees took to social media to express their gratitude to the player's association:
Nella mia testa in questo momento c’è una parola che risuona fortemente: .— Annamaria Serturini (@AnnaSerturini) March 21, 2022
Ricevere per la prima volta questo premio a livello personale é bellissimo. Il livello del nostro campionato si sta alzando sempre di più ed essere nella Top 11 è davvero speciale… (Pt.1) pic.twitter.com/tfHtgRgSRg
Un premio inaspettato ma molto gradito. Orgogliosa di quanto fatto fino ad ora, ma stimolata a non accontentarmi mai e a lavorare duro. Grazie a chi mi ha votata. Grazie alle mie compagne e alla Roma per aver creduto in me. Ora testa bassa e lavorare. #ggdc #aic #calciofemminile pic.twitter.com/wQfNlHVPdJ— Elena Linari (@ElenaLinari) March 21, 2022
Joining the five Romans on the team of the season are Juve's Cecilia Salvai, Lisa Boatin, Arianna Caruso, Valentina Cernoia and Cristiana Girelli, who also took home Player of the Year honors, while Verona keeper Francesco Durante was the lone non-Roma or non-Juventus player to make the cut this season.
Congrats to Bartoli, Linari, Giugliano, Glionna and Serturini! Check back later this week as we assess Roma's chances of making next season's Champions League!