Inter captain Javier Zanetti and his family received a private audience with Pope Francis I today, handing over a Nerazzurri jersey.
The official club website revealed the two met for an hour at Santa Marta, discussing how Argentineans settle in Italy and the work of the Inter Campus and Fondazione PUPI charity organisations.
“It was an emotional meeting, because when he was elected Pope, the first wish I had was to meet him,” said Zanetti.
“Today I was able to do that and it was a privilege. I found a simple man with an enormous heart who will use all his energy to help the faithful.”
Pope Francis I is from Buenos Aires and a huge football fan, particularly of club San Lorenzo.
Zanetti was pictured handing over his Number 4 Inter jersey and the captain’s armband embroidered with the flags of Italy, Argentina and the Vatican City, plus the initials of Zanetti and the Pope.
There was also a plaque representing the PUPI Foundation and a book about the Inter Campus with special dedication from President Massimo Moratti.