La gente della notte

At night, when some parts of the Eternal City looks and sounds like scenes from a Jovanotti song, in the area around the Colosseum everything is quiet, the noise from the traffic on via dei Fori Imperiali finally quieting down; the traffic itself slowing down, becoming ever scarcer as the night wears on.

There, in the shadow of a gigantic monument and gigantic pine trees, stands on display the trophy that some romanisti saw - vainly, delusionally, romantically - as our destiny. Not the trophy or tournament itself, not with pretensions to win it any other year. Just this year's trophy, to be used as a powerful relic to banish ghosts from 1984 once and for all.

So if that nightly silence in front of the Colosseum should happen to break by a loud, lamenting sigh; leave he who sighs alone, standing there thinking of that which never happened. For he is Francesco Totti, snuck out into the night to see and grief that he didn't get to see the trophy in Rome under different circumstances; holding it to the Roman skies on Wednesday evening.