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Rising Stars: Giacomo Faticanti

In a new series, we take a look at some of the players making a name for themselves for the Primavera this season - and in the process setting themselves up to make waves in senior football before too long.

We start off with emerging midfielder Giacomo Faticanti...

A Romanista with the iconic Daniele de Rossi for an idol, things at Roma hit differently for exciting 17-year-old talent Giacomo Faticanti.

Faticanti is one of the most promising players in the Primavera side - and one of the youngest, too - while he has already led two age groups of the Giallorossi to league titles.

Faticanti creates and finishes the match-winner against SPAL in a recent match

As a result, all eyes are on Faticanti's development at a time when youth are really starting to shine again at the Stadio Olimpico…


THE SNAPSHOT

Name: Giacomo Faticanti
Position: Central midfielder
Shirt Number: 16
Date of Birth: 31 July 2004 (17) 
Born in:
Sora, Lazio


THE EARLY DAYS

Faticanti was born to Roma-supporting parents Paolo and Claudia in Sora, near Frosinone, on 31 July 2004 - but he almost immediately started attending matches at the Stadio Olimpico.

And he is the first to recognise his parents' impact on his development, telling Corriere dello Sport: "My mum and dad have been fundamental for my growth, together with my brother Francesco. Since this year my parents have moved to Rome to be close to me, they are my inspiration."

Initially, though, it would be away from the club he supported as a boy that Faticanti would begin his footballing journey; first at Atletico Sora and then Frosinone.

He made the move to the Canaries as a 12-year-old in 2016 and, having tried out positions at both ends of the pitch, Faticanti soon found a home in the middle of the park.

By the start of the 2018-19 season, he had attracted the attention of Roma scouts and made the switch to the Trigoria academy setup.

Asked what his ideal role is, Faticanti said: “In front of the defence.

"I started at Sora at four-years-old, then Frosinone and finally to Roma. As a child I was also a defender and attacker."


Faticanti (with the trophy) as his Under-17 side won the national title last season

RETURNING TO ROME

Since joining up with the Giallorossi, it is fair to say that Faticanti has fairly quickly made a significant impression on the teams he has been asked to represent - both as a player and as a leader.

“I was born as a Romanista and Rome raised me as a man and as a footballer," he added in the interview with Corriere dello Sport.

"I owe everything to Roma."

The homecoming brought Faticanti under the tutelage of fellow Romanista, former youth player and legendary Primavera coach Alberto de Rossi - but the great coach was not the only De Rossi family member that he was looking forward to meeting.


AN IDEAL IDOL

At the time, Alberto's son Daniele was embarking on his final year of his near two decade long spell at the club and simply sharing Trigoria with the iconic midfielder made it a special first 12 months at Roma for Faticanti.

“Daniele De Rossi," was his emphatic answer to who is his footballing idol.

"I am lucky enough to know him and talk to him often. He was a great champion, and he's a fantastic person. In Rome and in the national team I play with the No. 16 because of him."

With the Primavera age group introducing fixed shirt numbers for the first time this season, it was no coincidence that Faticanti once again requested - and received - the No. 16 shirt.

It should probably come as no surprise then that Faticanti, like his idol, also prefers to sit in front of the back four as a holding midfielder, and he too is combative and hard-working, as was the two-time Coppa Italia winner.

Faticanti is also outrageously gifted from a technical perspective, is two-footed, and enjoys setting the tempo of his side's play - just as De Rossi did towards the end of his 18-year career as a professional.


A FUTURE ROMA DEBUTANT ... AND CAPTAIN?

The 17-year-old is also a natural born leader and, although comparisons to a Hall of Famer like De Rossi should come with severe content warnings, it is hard to ignore the similarities between the young pretender and his illustrious predecessor.

De Rossi led Roma with a burning desire and heart for the fight every time he entered the pitch - giving dictionary definitions for a Romanista each and every week.

There's something unique in the blood and Faticanti has it running through his veins, too.

He has already skippered the U-17s to a league title last season (having won the league with the Under-15s too) and dictates play for the Under-19s this season (27 appearances, two goals to date) despite his young age - important harbingers of future success at a professional level.

For now, Faticanti is focused on his development, and he is encouraged by head coach Jose Mourinho's trust in youth that has seen the likes of Felix Afena-Gyan, Cristian Volpato and, latterly, Filippo Missori all given first team opportunities.

“It's an extra push for me, too," he said, when asked what it meant to see the door to the first team opened up by the Portuguese tactician.

"It would be great to go down the same route. When I trained with Mourinho it was a unique experience for me."

Gaining such regular experience in a successful Primavera team, while also training on occasion with the first-team, it seems only a matter of time before the young midfielder's rapid rise continues.

It may not be long until his name is seen on a first-team squad list too.

Faticanti with his Under-17 teammates as they paraded the national title around the Olimpico last summer
 
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