Lecce Coach Eusebio Di Francesco admits his Roma memories will come flooding back, but also hopes former teammate Francesco Totti “doesn’t play.”
The tactician wore the Giallorossi jersey for 168 games with 14 goals and even won the 2000-01 Scudetto.
“The most emotional memory is the derby we drew 3-3 with Lazio in which I scored an important goal,” he told the Gazzetta dello Sport.
“We were losing 3-1 and I got in front of Pavel Nedved to meet Totti’s cross from the left, scoring on the volley with my right foot to beat Luca Marchegiani.”
Totti is still the Roma captain now and could make his comeback after more than a month on the treatment table.
“Francesco has always been the added value for Roma. I am proud to still have an extraordinary rapport with him and every Christmas we exchange gifts. This year he could give me the gift of not playing against Lecce...” joked Di Francesco.
“I will have some very special sensations before the game, of course. I have great memories of the city and the Roma fans. However, once the match kicks off, I will have room in my head only for Lecce.
“We are in good shape at the moment and must now give consistency to our results. The lads have improved a great deal in terms of focus and concentration.”
Another former Roma man is goalkeeper Julio Sergio, but he might be on the Lecce bench.
“I have already made a decision on who plays and will tell the team tomorrow. The goalkeeper is a delicate role and I thought long and hard before making this decision.”
See the latest Serie A predictions and betting tips with Eurotips.co.uk