De Rossi initially rejected Roma
He has gone on to become a club legend at the Giallorossi and the ‘Capitano Futuro’ admitted that he was having so much fun with his previous club Ostia Mare that he did not want to move to the club he loved.
“My experience with Ostia was very important and it was already quite a high level there but I had so much fun and Roma came to get me when I was nine but I didn’t want to go,” he told UEFA.
“I was too happy with my friends at Ostia and instead I chose to go at 11 or 12 but I still live in the Ostia area and have a great affection for the place to this day. My move from there to the Roma first team was gradual and I remember with great emotion my first day at Roma.
“The difference between there and Ostia Mare was incredible with the kit and facilities and everything they had there, it was like being in another world.”
He also revealed that back then, he was deployed as a striker before moving further and further back as his career progressed.
De Rossi continued: “When I was a kid, I played as a striker before gradually moving back to be a trequartista and then was placed in front of the defence.
“Playing as a striker helped me to understand forwards and their movement and I can anticipate this now as well as being able to target the goal when going forward myself and it remains a crucial part of my game.”