Balzaretti: “I’m not giving up”

Injured fullback Federico Balzaretti spoke to Italian magazine Chi about his prolonged groin injury, which has kept him on the sideline for almost an entire year.

“My injury? I admit it, I cried. I have before with my teammates at Roma. I cried on the phone with my wife Eleonora Abbagnato. I cried alone, in anger and pain, but I never cried in front of my daughters. I have undergone two surgeries, but the groin pain I suffer hasn’t healed. It (the surgery) has caused deterioration. For doctors, perhaps I can no longer play football, but I’m not giving up. The thought of retiring hasn’t entered my mind. It hurts too much. I’m working hard to get back to playing, but I want to be able to run in the future to the park with my kids to play with them. I’m aware that today I wouldn’t be able to step on to the field and play an entire match. I have to start all over again mentally. I miss (things like) a simple jog to the park. Luckily there’s my family, my light. Roma has also been wonderful to me. President James Pallotta could send me away. What should they do with a broken Balzaretti? Instead, he chose to hope with me.”

The Editor of, John has been covering Italian football as a freelance journalist for over 10 years and has appeared in various publications including,, and ESPN.