DDDR (The Extra D Is for DAJE)

I'm not much for standard interviews with football players. The vast majority of them are superficial in its nature, the questions and responses offering little interesting insight into anything of value. Most of it is just fillers, like expressions of a game played hard and well, taking games one at a time, continuing to struggle on in times of hardship, and IthinkIjustfellasleeponmykeyboardzzz.

Things that differ from the above triteness includes whenever DDR talks about his relationship to Roma, because I still want to believe that's something special. At this point, it's not even hinged on the fact that he stay in Roma for the rest of his career. There have been times, dark times, where I wished nothing more for him than that he could move away to a real team and have the career his potential makes possible. But even if he did move away, his emotional relationship to Roma wouldn't change because of it. Luckily, I read just such an interview with DDR today:

"During Roma-Lazio, a friend of mine was on the sidelines, he's a big romanista, or perhaps he's more of a friend to me than he is romanista. He's always telling me to move away from Rome because I deserve to experience different emotions and play in games like Real-Barcelona or Manchester-Liverpool. At the end of the game I ran into him, without even knowing he was supposed to be there, and when we hugged I told him: 'Do you see, do you see why I stay here, do you see?'. Now he finally understands."

He says more things in the interview, like moving away from Roma only being an option if Roma was going bust, and words of admiration for his one time mentor, Pep Guardiola, and the desire to see the fans come back to the stadium, "even if it's 'just' Parma". But the quote above, about why he stays in Rome, is the real prize. I don't know if there exists a characterization or general perception of Danielino that he is stupid, as there was with Totti for years, but I never in any case got the impression he was considered to be actually clever. And yet, I think he is. He has a passion and way of showcasing that which does look retrogressive, but my impression is that when he does actually talk to the media it's never bizarre or even banal. Maybe I'm colored by his reasoning for staying in Rome, and everything I think and write about him right now is tainted and skewed by all the little hearts that float around in front of my eyes, but that is my honest to God impression right now as I write this.



If my possibly biased hypothesis is correct, it forms the very interesting contrast within De Rossi between cerebration and passion. I would never go as far as saying that the two are in any way mutually exclusive to one another, that notion strikes me as wholly absurd. But there's also the underlying sense of DDR caring just a little too much, if that were possible. His physique isn't intimidating upon a glance or closer inspection, but he operates with the power a mother gets when her kid is jammed under a car. That's Daniele - that's the kind of power he taps into whenever he plays for Roma. Maybe that extra bit of passion is why, counter-intuitively, he's never really played a genuinely great derby game. Or maybe the derby is just unique, and nothing one can extrapolate from, but merely treat for what it is; a high intensive game unlike any other in Europe. That's a description which fits DDR as well.