Serie A - Totti wants yet another new deal at Roma

Italy legend Francesco Totti wants to carry on playing for at least two more seasons despite being 36 and having racked up 20 years with the club.

Serie A - Totti to sign Roma extension

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Francesco Totti celebrates scoring against Juventus with Roma team-mate Miralem Pjanic

One of the very few one-club players in the modern game, Totti has found a second wind this season as he partners players such as Nicolas Lopez and Alessio Romagnoli, who were both born after he made his Roma debut 20 years ago, as a substitute against Brescia in March 1993.

Totti's current contract expires next summer, but he is already looking to extend his career with Roma beyond that and wants to keep going until he's 40.

"I’m hoping for a renewal and I’ll speak directly to President James Pallotta about it next week when he comes," he told Gazzetta dello Sport.

"Time has flown because I have done everything with passion," he added, then went on to insist that he has never had any regrets about spending his whole career at Roma.

"Before my penultimate contract renewal, I had decided to join Real Madrid. Then my contract and some personal issues pushed me to stay here. And I have never had any regrets about that.”

There has even been talk of an Italy recall for Totti, who has not played for his country since winning the 2006 World Cup, but the player poured cold water on the idea.

"A World Cup is the ultimate, especially in Brazil where football is everything. But if things went badly then everyone would know who to blame," he said.

“The critics would say that Italy had taken an old guy who ruined the squad.”

Tributes flowed for Totti recently after he scored a 225th Serie A goal to become the league's second-highest goalscorer of all time behind Silvio Piola, who scored 274 goals - most of them for Roma's arch-rivals Lazio.

"Totti is simply a champion and, like all champions, he has unimaginable resources," said seasoned Italian coach Fabio Capello.

"He may have lost a bit of pace, but he has made up for that with astuteness and intelligence," said the former AC Milan, AS Roma, Real Madrid and England coach, now with Russia.

"I was the first to use him in a more advanced attacking role because I realised that his success rate was very high every time he shot at goal.

"He can't play forever but he can still play on for a couple more years. He can't play in all the games, he has to understand that he can only continue at this standard if he plays in a limited number of matches."

"But he must realise that he can't always play; he can only continue at these levels if he appears in a certain amount of matches."

Playing his 21st full season, Totti has had ups and downs in recent years, partly through injury and occasionally falling out of favour with coaches such as Claudio Ranieri and Luis Enrique.

Although he is not always the easiest of team mates and sullied his reputation by spitting at Denmark's Christian Poulsen at Euro 2014, he remains an inspiration for his younger team mates and is held up as an example in Italian football.

"I had the good fortune to train him for a few months and that was an honour," said Italy coach Cesare Prandelli, a man known for not tolerating bad behaviour, in December.

"He is an exemplary professional and is breaking all records at Roma, regardless of age. Totti is a real champion and always manages to achieve his objectives. He's also a great man."

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