It was one of the stories of 2019 yet Daniele De Rossi’s move to Boca Juniors never really got off the ground and on Monday afternoon the Italian World Cup winner announced his retirement.
De Rossi had reported back for preseason with new manager Miguel Ángel Russo but left the training ground separately earlier today and confirmed his departure at a later press conference.
Six months remained on the 36-year-old’s one-year deal at La Bombonera and despite there being no injury issues, De Rossi stated his desire to be with his family as the reason.
“I don’t have any health-related issues, I just have to be with my daughter. My family miss me, and I miss them,” De Rossi told the press.
Sat with new Boca president Jorge Amor Ameal, the Roma legend explained that the club had tried to persuade him to stay.
“I had the pleasure of working with the new board. They tried to convince me to stay but the decision was set. They asked me to think about this for a few days. They offered me their help. But I don’t need help. I need to go back home.
“This decision wasn’t made from one day to the next, this decision was made a while ago, but I thought it only right to come back here and tell people face-to-face, as a sign of respect.
“I’m not only saying goodbye to a club that’s in my heart, I’m saying goodbye to football, it’s my world.”
An absolutely fantastic football career comes to an end.
Thank you for so many incredible memories, Daniele
— AS Roma English (@ASRomaEN) January 6, 2020