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De Rossi admits Serie A are 'decades behind'

Thursday, August 15, 2013 by Fox Sports

Italian football have suffered from the Calciopoli scandal in 2006 and the Serie A have lost a Champions League spot since due to a string of poor performances from their clubs in European competitions.

De Rossi admitted that Italian football must work hard together in order to put itself back among the top leagues in the continent.

"The culture of Italian football is about 10-20 years behind the times," the Italian international said in a press conference ahead of Italy's friendly against Argentina.

"The way we think and live it is all wrong.

"We are behind English football, Spanish and German. We'll soon be behind the French championship too.

"For a start, look at our stadiums and our kick off times. We play in January at 9 o'clock at night in Udine...

"It wouldn't take a lot to improve, like Serie B who play at Christmas and then have January off.

"I'm not saying this with venom or anger because if our football is behind then it is also because of me seeing as I am a part of it.

"However, had I left Roma in the past or if I leave in the future then I would run for an experience abroad."

De Rossi reiterated his desire to stay at Roma this season and vowed to not join another Italian side should he choose to leave.

"I feel like an integral part of Roma and Roma are an integral part of my life," added the youth team product.

"But if I was to go then I would not play for another Italian side out of respect to the club. I would move to a foreign outfit."

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