Roma striker Francesco Totti overwhelmed by Bernabeu ovation
Roma veteran Francesco Totti thanked the Real Madrid fans for giving him a standing ovation when he came on as a substitute in the Champions league round-of-16 game at the Bernabeu on Tuesday.
Totti, 39, who has spent his entire playing career with the Giallorossi, came on to replace Stephan El Shaarawy for the final 15 minutes of his side's 2-0 defeat.
The forward, who said his one regret in football is that he never played for Real, told reporters: "It's a unique emotion -- indescribable.
"I really didn't expect it to be so strong. It means I've given a lot to the game of football, and this is my thanks from an amazing stadium."
Tuesday's game, which saw Madrid complete a 4-0 aggregate win after Roma had missed a number of good chances, is likely to have been Totti's last visit to the Bernabeu as a player.
With his contract up for renewal in the summer and Roma not assured of a place in the Champions League next season, Il Tempo reported him as saying: "This is a moment I just want to enjoy now, and then we'll see."
Madrid's Sergio Ramos told reporters he had swapped shirts with Totti, who he said had been a boyhood hero.
"He came over as he wanted a signed jersey of mine," he told reporters. "That made me proud. I have admired him since I was small. He gave me his and signed it for me, too."
Frustrated Roma boss Luciano Spalletti, who had said his side could change the tie if they scored the first goal, lambasted some of his players for their reaction after the match.
"When I go back into the dressing room after tonight's 2-0 and see the players looking satisfied, then it really is hard to take," La Repubblica reported him as saying.
"Being relaxed and satisfied after losing these two games causes me great concern. Who can even begin to imagine what level we've dropped down to if we can be happy about losing two games?
"We need to grow, and we need to grow fast because this is not on. The truth is we have lost 2-0. All the rest is just chatter, and I don't intend to take part in that.
"I was convinced we could fight to get through. Compliment the players if you want, but we have to improve. At the first sign of difficulty, we are unable to be on the level that belongs to this competition."
Roma's attention now turns to the final 10 games of the Serie A season. They are currently third, three points clear of fourth-placed Fiorentina -- a position that would give them a Champions League playoff place.