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Soccer Extras: De Rossi to leave Roma after 18 years

May 14, 2019 10:58 IST

 News of all that's transpired on and off the football field

AS Roma's Daniele De Rossi

IMAGE: De Rossi won two Coppa Italia titles with Roma in 2007 and 2008, although the nearest he came to a Serie A crown was in 2010 when Roma led the table with four games to go but were overhauled by Jose Mourinho's Inter Milan. Photograph: Paolo Bruno/Getty Images

Combative AS Roma midfielder Daniele De Rossi will end his playing career after 18 years at the Serie A club during which he made 615 appearances and scored 63 goals in all competitions.

The club confirmed in a statement that Roma's final game of the season - at home to Parma - would be De Rossi's last for the club he joined as a teenager in 2000.

Roma chief executive Guido Fienga said the club only informed De Rossi on Monday of their decision not to renew his contract.

 

"I apologised to Daniele, on behalf of the club, for not speaking to him sooner - it has been a problematic season," Fienga told a news conference.

"The club is aware of the mistakes we've made, and we are reflecting on that. But we appreciate the way Daniele has accepted the decision."

Fienga offered Rossi a director's role at Roma but the former Italy international has decided to extend his playing career.

"I'm almost 36 and I know how football is, but I didn't want to distract from our European (qualification) race," De Rossi told reporters.

"I thank the directors for their offer - I respect it and appreciate it, but I still feel like a player."

"Eventually, I would like to be a coach. At this point I don't see myself becoming a director, but at Roma a role like that would have some meaning. I need to go away and study, to learn - it will be a long journey."

De Rossi won two Coppa Italia titles with Roma in 2007 and 2008, although the nearest he came to a Serie A crown was in 2010 when Roma led the table with four games to go but were overhauled by Jose Mourinho's Inter Milan.

"We will all shed tears when he pulls on the Giallorossi (yellow-and-red) shirt for the last time against Parma but we respect his desire to prolong his playing career - even if, at almost 36, it will be away from Rome," said club president James Pallotta.

"I'd like to thank Daniele for his incredible dedication to this club and ensure him that our doors will remain open for him to return to the club in a new role whenever he wants."

De Rossi also played 117 games for Italy, making him their fourth most-capped player, and came on as a second-half substitute in the 2006 World Cup final in which they beat France on penalties after a 1-1 draw.

De Rossi missed most of that tournament, however, as he was serving a four-match suspension for elbowing an opponent in their opening game against the United States.

He was also sent off nine times playing for AS Roma but there was far more to De Rossi than aggression, as he is famous for his vision, passing ability and eye for goal.

Inter return to third spot with win over Chievo

Inter Milan moved back into third place in Serie A when goals from Matteo Politano and Ivan Perisic gave them a 2-0 home win over relegated Chievo, who finished with 10 men, on Monday.

With two matches to play, Inter have 66 points, one ahead of Atalanta, with AC Milan and AS Roma a further three points back, in the race for a top-four finish and a Champions League place.

Politano broke the deadlock six minutes before halftime with a low shot from the edge of the penalty area which went in off the post.

The visitors, bottom of the table with only two wins all season, battled on bravely but were in more trouble when Nicola Rigoni was sent off for a second booking in the 76th minute.

Inter finally sealed the game when Perisic, who had earlier hit the post, turned in the rebound after a Cedric Soares shot struck the woodwork again.

Ten-man Parma score two own goals in 4-1 loss at Bologna

Parma pressed the self-destruct button as they scored two own goals and had veteran defender Bruno Alves sent off in a 4-1 defeat at Bologna in Serie A that left them hovering dangerously close to the relegation zone on Monday.

Riccardo Orsolini gave Bologna the lead in the 51st minute with a solo goal before visiting goalkeeper Luigi Sepe, who had kept Parma in the game with a string of first-half saves, had a nightmare moment just before the hour mark.

Sepe misjudged an Erick Pulgar free kick, the ball hit the post and then bounced off Sepe's hand into the net.

Two minutes later, Alves, 37, was booked for a tackle on Orsolini, then tried to pull the player up which started a pushing match and the Portuguese was sent off.

Lyanco headed home Bologna's third goal and Roberto Inglese pulled one back for the visitors before fellow Roma substitute Francisco Sierralta deflected a Pulgar shot into his own net as Bologna completed a sixth successive home win.

The victory took Bologna, who have enjoyed an impressive revival under Sinisa Mihajlovic, to 40 points, five clear of the danger zone, while Parma have 38 points, only three above the relegation places, with two rounds of the season remaining.

Palermo relegated to Serie C over administrative irregularities

Palermo, who have changed hands three times this season, have been relegated to Serie C by the Italian Football Federation (FIGC) for administrative irregularities.

Relegated from Serie A last season, Palermo finished third in Serie B this term, earning a place in the promotion playoffs in which they were due to play their first match next week.

Instead, an FIGC tribunal ruled that the club would be placed last in the 19-team table, condemning them to relegation to the third tier.

"The club was sanctioned for a series of management irregularities by some former managers," the tribunal said in a statement on Monday.

There was no immediate response from the Sicilian club although an appeal could force the playoffs to be postponed.

Palermo owner Maurizio Zamparini sold the club to British-based Sport Capital Group for the symbolic price of 10 euros ($11.23) in December.

Three months later, ownership was transferred to Zamparini's associates Daniela De Angeli and Rino Foschi. Last week, the club was taken over again, this time by Italian-based Arkus Network.

In 2017, a takeover bid from U.S.-born businessman Paul Baccaglini was rejected by Zamparini more than four months after it was announced that terms had been agreed for the deal.

Zamparini was in charge at Palermo for 16 years, famously hiring and firing over 40 coaches during that period.

Languishing in Serie B when he took over in 2002, pink-shirted Palermo won promotion in 2003-04 as they returned to the top flight after a more than 30-year wait.

In Zamparini's first few years they routinely finished in the top half of the table, played in the UEFA Cup several times and had four members of Italy's 2006 World Cup-winning squad.

Players such as Uruguay forward Edinson Cavani and Argentine pair Paulo Dybala and Javier Pastore played at the club early in their careers.

Palermo's fortunes faded after that and they were relegated in 2013 but returned to Serie A at the first attempt.

They narrowly avoided another relegation in 2016 after an extraordinary season in which the

Slovenian Skomina to referee Champions League final

Slovenia's Damir Skomina will referee the all-English Champions League final between Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur at Madrid's Wanda Metropolitano Stadium on June 1, UEFA said on Tuesday.

The 42-year-old Skomina, an international referee since 2002, has taken charge of four Champions League matches and two Europa League games this season.

Skomina officiated the Europa League final between Ajax Amsterdam and Manchester United in 2017 and the Super Cup between Chelsea and Atletico Madrid in 2012.

At the final in Madrid, Skomina will be assisted by compatriots Jure Praprotnik and Robert Vukan, with Spain's Antonio Mateu Lahoz named as the fourth official.

Mahrez keen to stay at Manchester City despite limited minutes

Winger Riyad Mahrez has said he will not seek a move away from Premier League champions Manchester City in search of more playing time after helping Pep Guardiola's side win their second successive title over the weekend.

Mahrez, who became the club's record signing last year at a reported 60 million pounds ($77.78 million), started only 14 league games this season as Guardiola opted for Raheem Sterling and Leroy Sane on the wings.

The Algerian has chipped in with seven league goals and four assists this season, including one in the 4-1 win at Brighton and Hove Albion that sealed the title, and said he would not shy away from the competition for a starting spot.

"I'm very happy here," Mahrez told reporters.

"I'm not going somewhere else because I don't play.

"It's part of the game. I need to be strong, stay strong. It's part of my personality, I never hide from things."

Mahrez, who was the Professional Footballers' Association player of the year when he led Leicester City to the 2015-16 league title, said he knew it would be difficult to earn his spot in Guardiola's record-breaking team.

City won the title last season with a record 100 points, winning 32 games and scoring 106 goals in the process.

"It's not easy to come to a team who are settled and have the players who play," Mahrez added. "That squad did everything last season.

"I knew it wouldn't be easy in my first year but I'm very confident in myself and have no doubts about my quality."

City, who also won the League Cup earlier this season, have the chance to seal an unprecedented English domestic treble when they take on Watford in the FA Cup final on Saturday.

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