Daniele De Rossi signs for Boca Juniors after leaving Roma
By Tommaso Fiore
Last Updated: 26/07/19 7:21am
Former Roma captain Daniele De Rossi has joined Boca Juniors on a one-year deal.
The 36-year-old emerged as a summer transfer target for the Argentinian club after Roma announced they would not renew his contract, bringing an end to his 18-season stay in the Italian capital, but not to his career.
De Rossi arrived in Buenos Aires in the early hours of Thursday morning and successfully underwent a medical before signing on a free transfer.
The former Italy international attracted interest from various Serie A clubs including Fiorentina, AC Milan and Sampdoria, but made a life choice by moving to the Bombonera, a stadium he particularly admires.
"I would have liked to play at Boca at 20, 30 or 35 years of age," De Rossi told Italian magazine Undici in 2017.
"It's one of my wishes and it always has been. I would like to play in a match against River Plate at the Bombonera. When I see that stadium, it takes my breath away. But I never said I wanted to retire there."
The move was orchestrated by De Rossi's friend Nicolas Burdisso, who spent five years at Roma between 2009 and 2014, and is now the Boca sporting director.
Boca Juniors are hoping to return to Copa Libertadores glory this season after losing out to city rivals River Plate in last year's final, as they beat Athletico Paranaense 1-0 in the first leg of the round of 16 on Wednesday.
De Rossi, a product of Roma's youth system, passed on his captaining duties to fellow Roman Alessandro Florenzi following his departure from the Stadio Olimpico.
He made 616 appearances for the Italian side over the course of 18 seasons, scoring 63 goals and winning two Coppa Italias, one Supercoppa Italiana and the FIFA World Cup with Italy in 2006.