Aeneas. Rhea Silvia. Romulus. Gaius Julius Caesar.
Amadei. Di Bartolomei. Conti. Totti. De Rossi.
A brief historical list of the leaders of Rome. From the city’s foundation and the she-wolf, to Julius Caesar expanding the empire, and now at the feet of Totti, Rome has always been populated and led by the finest individuals in the world. Romanesque, Romano, Romanitá: Just a few of the adjectives which describe an essence of Romanism. The Romanità of individuals has not always been so fortunate; the death of Remus, the assassination of Julius Caesar, are ancient examples, for instance. A more current example is the tragic death of Ago Di Bartolomei; the captain of Roma who tragically took his life, exactly 10 years after Roma lost to Liverpool in the Champions League Final, in 1983. Fates undeserving, the last one mentioned almost too difficult to write about.
Not all emperors were born in Rome, and not all bandiere can be from Roma’s primavera. There is nothing wrong with that. What is a requirement though, is that Roma’s captain bleeds red and yellow; shows up to every match, with the blood thirsty intent of not just winning, but capitulating the opponent. Professionalism, or lets call it “statesmanship,” also comes hand in hand with the role; Roma is a professional club, and part of the Romanism is that our captain handles himself in a professional, executory way.In an era where Lazio’s last captain is a convicted match fixer, Rome has two of the most prominent leaders of all time wearing her shirt. They just both happen to be Roman.
It’s been 32 years since Roma’s second to last scudetto, and 14 since the magical Batistuta led the wolf to glory. There isn’t the time for giving anything less. When we come across players such as Alessio Romagnoli, it’s easy to blame management for not wanting to keep these future leaders. However, not once did I read, see, or hear a statement from Alessio that he wanted to stay; this is unacceptable. Further, it seems destiny paved its way, as Romagnoli was uncovered in a Lazio shirt, just days ago. Nothing but a hiccup in Roma’s march to destiny; there is greater work that needs to be done.
For the present and future, Roma has a group worthy of leading together. As Totti will leave the majority of the playing time to his Augustus, De Rossi, we can be sure that there is a determined core already in full swing: The new Trajan, Radja Nainggolan, with Ale Florenzi and Daniele Verde as his consulates. When the boy from Campania returns from loan, we will be expecting big things from him. For now, Radja and Florenzi exemplify exactly what it means, and takes, to lead Rome. A kiss to Nonna, a Roman soldier’s helmet for a hairstyle, and the hope of spring-green Verde, Roma has her next triumvirate.
For now though, now is the ultimate necessary. The 2015/16 Serie A season is our greatest hope since 1982/83. The new additions guided by the leadership of Totti, in his last push for a title, can take the scudetto back to Rome. The leadership is there, the drive and will is there, and the talent is there. Under the shadow of the she-wolf, and in the light of our finest general ever, it is time for a fourth Roman championship.