Totti keen on Italy return

Italy veteran will return to the Azzurri if he gets the call-up from coach Lippi.

    Totti has declared his interest - but Lippi has said there is no guarantee of a spot [EPA]
    AS Roma striker and Italy veteran Francesco Totti has declared himself ready to play for his country in the World Cup if coach Marcello Lippi asks him to do so.

    The 33-year-old quit the Azzurri after their 2006 World Cup triumph but has finally announced he would be willing to return to the fold having only hinted at the prospect in recent months.

    Totti played under Lippi in Italy's 2006 World Cup triumph and he said that he had great respect for the coach.

    "I will decide in April.

    "If Marcello Lippi calls me up, if I am fit and if the group wants me, I will go," Totti told Italian newspaper La Repubblicca.

    Totti, who has played with Roma since 1993, resisting all big money attempts to lure him away, said that he felt he could play for a further five years during which he wanted to win another Italian league title with the club.

    Respect

    Coach Lippi has long hailed Totti but has never said he will be guaranteed a place back in the squad.

    Constant injury problems over recent seasons could pose a problem while some players could resent his inclusion given he did not assist the Azzurri in qualification for June's tournament in South Africa.

    Totti has broken a string of scoring records having spent his entire career at Roma, who are joint fourth in Italy's Serie A thanks to his nine goals this term.

    Luca Toni, a new team mate of Totti having signed on loan from Bayern Munich, is also a candidate for a return to the Italy squad but first wants to concentrate on Roma.

    "I haven't come to Roma solely for the World Cup. Now my aim to score lots of goals and play well. Then we'll see what happens in June," Toni, whose Italy hopes could be complicated if Totti returns, told a news conference.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Why Saudi-Israeli normalisation could be dangerous

    Why Saudi-Israeli normalisation could be dangerous

    Apart from being disastrous for Palestine, normalising relations with Israel could get Saudi Arabia in real trouble.

    Gender violence in India: 'Daughters are not a burden'

    Gender violence in India: 'Daughters are not a burden'

    With female foeticide still widespread, one woman tells her story of being mutilated for giving birth to her daughters.

    What is Mohammed bin Salman's next move?

    What is Mohammed bin Salman's next move?

    There are reports Saudi Arabia is demanding money from the senior officials it recently arrested.