Happy birthday Falcao, Roma’s rising sun


In the beginning there was Falcao.

Como v Roma, 14 September 1980.

The life of every Roma fan was changed forever that day, as Paulo Roberto Falcao made his Serie A debut.

Roma won the match 1-0 courtesy of an own goal from Piero Volpi in the 25th minute of the first half.

Nothing was ever the same after Falcao’s debut. Silverware came to a city starved of trophies. The match jerseys were gorgeous, incorporating both the old and the new all at once. Youngsters could be seen wearing them on the cobbled streets of Rome as they replaced the crumpled shirts and flags of old.

Rome became cultured and beautiful once again. The club itself was different back then. It had big dreams to achieve. Roma was everywhere.

It was a special time. Everyone was able to enjoy the privilege of going to the stadium. The Olimpico was a playground and nobody needed any invitation to believe in fairy tales. It was time to dream.

Roma was everywhere. It was a phenomenon that transcended the boundaries of football and invaded people’s social lives, the music they listened to, the films they watched. It was there, every day, in the background. It was the ultimate companion.

If there was one period in time when the people were king, it was then. It was an era when you would go to the stadium and be moved to say: I love you.

Paulo Roberto Falcao was embodiment of all that, a footballer as aesthetically beautiful as he was practical. It’s little wonder that we now think of two Romas – one before Falcao, one after.

He added that sprinkle of gold dust to our club. He was the fifth point of our compass, on and off the pitch.

He was the evening sun you could glimpse from the Curva Sud.

He was a rising sun.

Based on an extract from ‘Il mare di Roma’