Modern era Italian capital clubs combined XI: best of Roma and Lazio
In anticipation for one of the most important Derby della Capitale clashes of recent seasons, as bitter local rivals Lazio (7/5 with Coral to win) and Roma (2/1) duel for second spot in Serie A, Coral experts present a combined modern era XI featuring the most majestic players to have plied their trade in the Eternal City.
Read on below to find out who are our starting line-up picks plus subs from the best of Roma red and Lazio blue……
Formation: 4-4-2 diamond
Goalkeeper: Angelo Peruzzi (Roma and Lazio)
Peruzzi, crowned Serie A Goalkeeper of the Year three times, began his footballing journey protecting the posts for Roma, with whom he enjoyed two stints before later finishing his career with Lazio, after also spending time at Juventus and Inter Milan. Quite the CV.
Right back: Cafu (Roma)
Flying fullback Cafu, Brazil’s most capped player of all-time, was a consistent threat bombing down the flanks for the Giallorossi, with whom the two-time World Cup winner spent six seasons and lifted a Serie A title.
Check out Cafu’s cheeky skills vs Lazio:
Centre back: Alessandro Nesta (Lazio)
Rome born and bred Eagles academy graduate Nesta is considered one of the finest centre backs of his generation, and captured an impressive trophy haul with his boyhood club, including two Scudetti, two Coppa Italia titles and a UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup.
Centre back: Fernando Couto (Lazio)
Cultured Couto marshalled the Eagles rearguard with aplomb for seven seasons, forming a formidable partnership with Nesta and claiming seven major trophies along the way, before returning to former club Parma to cap an illustrious career.
Left back: Sinisa Mihajlovic (Roma and Lazio)
Controversial Croatia-born Mihajlovic, joint-top scorer of free kicks in Serie A history, arrived in Italy in 1992 with Roma for a relatively short stint, which he described as “the two worst seasons of my entire career”. Ouch. With a stop-off at Sampdoria sandwiched in between, the man with the magic left peg then returned to Rome to help Lazio to a domestic double.
Defensive midfield: Daniele de Rossi (Roma)
Loyal midfield shield and Giallorossi stalwart De Rossi is the definition of a one club man and is the heartbeat of his hometown team. A fantastic all-rounder blessed with vision, tenacity and a vicious long-range strike, the 31-year-old has just two Coppa Italia titles to show for his 14 seasons and 485 outings, finishing runner-up in Serie A an astonishing six times.
Right midfield: Paul Gascoigne (Lazio)
Mercurial English talent Gascoigne enthralled Italy for just two full terms during a troubled time with the Eagles, with his most memorable moment an 89th minute equaliser in a Rome derby, earning the attacking midfielder adoration from fervent Lazio fans.
Left midfield: Pavel Nedved (Lazio)
Nifty Czech schemer Nedved made his name at the Stadio Olimpico long before heading north to Juventus, and assisted the Eagles’ late 90s and early 00s silverware success, making waves in Europe and snatching a Serie A title over five terms.
Attacking midfield: Francesco Totti (Roma)
Think Roma, think Totti. The Giallorossi talisman, now 38, is still going strong in his 23rd season with the Italian capital club. Captain, icon and all-time top scorer, Totti (15/8 to score anytime) holds the record for most Roma appearances, and the creative forward has also bagged a sole Scudetto.
Centre forward: Gabriel Batistuta (Roma)
Nicknamed “Batigol”, the prolific and powerful Argentina poacher arrived in Rome at the back end of his career, but his presence, and 20 league goals in 28 games, helped spur the Giallorossi to a first Serie A title since 1983 in 2001.
Centre forward: Miroslav Klose (Lazio)
Lazio’s lethal marksman Klose is in his fourth season at the Stadio Olimpico, having poached 55 goals and collected a Coppa Italia medal along the way. The 2006 World Cup Golden Shoe winner has been a key component in the Eagles’ recent return to prominence.
Take a peek at Klose’s Eagles antics:
Subs: Doni; Walter Samuel; Emerson; Juan Sebastian Veron; Vincenzo Montella; Marcelo Salas; Hernan Crespo