Wednesday, June 15, 2011

INFTH Top 100: Numbers 76 and 75

76. Morgan DeSanctis- The goalkeeper for one of the most exciting attacking sides in Serie A, De Sanctis was not greeted with quite as much praise as players like Cavani, Hamsik and Lavezzi. However, the keeper deserves a place on this list just as much as his attacking peers, he was still a crucial part of Napoli's ascent into the Champions League.

An Italian international, DeSanctis has lived in three different countries, suffered through a long transfer saga and played in Serie B. However, at Napoli, DeSanctis has finally found a home, a team that he feels comfortable with and a club reeling off success after success.

Playing behind a back line anchored by club captain Paolo Cannavaro, DeSanctis kept seventeen cleansheets last year, almost one shut out every two games; a fairly impressive record. However, despite enjoying such success with Napoli, DeSanctis still resides low down the National Team pecking order, both Christian Abbiati and Gianluigi Buffon are above him; a duo that the Napoli man will have trouble displacing.

75. Francesco Totti- Love him or hate him, it has to be admitted that Totti is one of the finest players ever to come out of Italian football. A sublime dribbler, Totti is so calm and composed on the ball, a talented leader that loves the club he represents.

After an injury ravaged few seasons, many wrote off Totti, a decision made much too hastily, the Italian really returned to the limelight this year. With fifteen goals, Totti was one of the Serie A's top goal scorers, and that total included a match winning double against arch rivals Lazio. As captain, Totti led by example, and continued to fight even during some of Roma's darkest hours last season.

After Ranieri left Roma mid season, Totti flourished under former teammate Vincenzo Montella; upon becoming a consistent starter, the goals began to flow. In late March, Totti reached his two hundredth Serie A goal, and weeks later he overtook Roberto Baggio to become fifth on Serie A's all time leading scorer chart.

With twelve goals in his last thirteen league appearances, Totti was the main reason for Roma's sixth place finish, and if he can keep fit next season, then a return to the Champions League is surely in the pipeline.

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