Francesco Totti: The Master of Perfection

Goutham BabuCorrespondent IMarch 11, 2009

Francesco Totti (born on September 27, 1976 in Rome), plays for AS Roma in Italian Serie A.

He retired from the national side after winning the World Cup in 2006 due to health problems. His position is that of a striker or an attacking midfielder, though he is best known for playing as a second striker or an attacking midfielder. Totti has spent his entire career at Roma and is the number one goal scorer and the most capped player in the club's history.

Totti made his first appearance for Roma's senior side at the age of sixteen, when coach Vujadin Boskov let him play in the 2-0 away victory against Brescia on March 28, 1993. In the following seasons, he began to play more games, and thus he succeeded in scoring his first goal on September 24, 1994 in a 1-1 draw against Foggia Calcio.

By 1995, Totti had become a regular in the starting eleven and scored 16 goals in the next three seasons. When he assumed the team captaincy in 1997, he began to gain recognition as a club symbol. Manager Zdenak Zeman played with an offensive 4-3-3 formation, in which Totti was the left winger.

Totti scored 30 goals during Zeman's two-year managerial stint.

Totti was the Italian footballer of the year for the years 2001 and 2002. In the 2003-04 season Totti scored 20 goals which was his career high total that time. But the 2004-05 season disappointing as they finished up with eighth spot.

Totti maintained his consistent offensive output by scoring fifteen goals, among them his hundredth Serie A goal against Internazionale on October 3, 2004. Two months later, on December 19, he became Roma's all-time leading scorer after netting his 107th career goal against Parma, breaking the record previously held by Roberto Puzzo.

The 2006-07 season was a personal high for Totti, as he finished as Serie A's Top Scorer with 26 goals as Roma finished runners-up to Inter but exacted revenge on the Nerazzurri as they took home the Coppa Italia 2007.

Totti also was the recipient of the ESM European Golden Shoe award as the top European goalscorer. Despite being the highest active goalscorer in Serie A, he was not among the finalists for the 2007 FIFA World Player Of The Year due to his national team absence, though he was nominated for the 2007 Ballon d'Or, finishing tenth in the voting.

The ALL-TIME achievements of Totti are:

  • Guerin d'Oro (Serie A Best Player): 1998, 2004
  • Serie A young footballer of the year: 1999
  • EURO team 2000 of the Tournament
  • Serie A footballer of the year: 2000, 2003
  • Italian Footballer of the year: 2000, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2007
  • ESM team of the year: 2000-01, 2003-04, 2006-07
  • FIFA 100
  • 2006 FIFA World CUP Winning Team
  • Seria A Top Scorer: 2006-2007
  • European Golden Shoe: 2006-07
  • USSI Silver Ball (Serie A Fair Play Award): 2007-08
  • Roma All-Time Leading Scorer
  • Roma All-Time leading no of appearances.