De Rossi's new deal inspired by Totti departure

Daniele De Rossi (File)
Daniele De Rossi (File)

Milan - Roma captain Daniele De Rossi signed a two-year contract extension on Wednesday, claiming any other decision would have been "too big a blow" following the departure of club legend Francesco Totti.

Club captain Totti, 40, ended his 25-year spell at Roma on Sunday when he played the last 36 minutes of a 3-2 home win over Genoa that secured Champions League football next season.

De Rossi, who is Roma's captain on the pitch, had been linked with a move away from the Stadio Olimpico.

But the 33-year-old Italy midfielder, who with €6m euros a year is reported to earn the biggest salary in Serie A, said he couldn't leave fans broken-hearted twice in the same season.

"I signed today, we'd agreed on the contract some time ago, but on Sunday I didn't want it spoken about with respect to another story that was just about to finish, or won't finish at all," said De Rossi.

"I hope the fans, after the emotion of Sunday, will remain close to us, even though Totti's departure has hurt us all.

"I thought, after Francesco, I couldn't leave the club as well. It would have been too big a blow."

A statement by Roma said: "The club is pleased to confirm that midfielder Daniele De Rossi has signed a new two-year contract with AS Roma.

"The 33-year-old has signed a new deal with the Giallorossi that expires on 30 June 2019.

"The central midfielder, a product of the club's youth academy, has made a total of 561 appearances for the first team, scoring 59 goals."

Roma finished only four points behind Juventus, although it was the capital side's ninth runner-up spot since last winning the league title, in 2001.

Roma coach Luciano Spalletti, who left the club on Tuesday, is expected to be named the new coach of Inter Milan in the coming days. Inter Milan, who finished out of Europe this season, sacked Stefano Pioli last month.

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