Former Italian international Damiano Tomasi has been elected mayor of Verona

Former Italian international midfielder Damiano Tomasi has been elected mayor of Verona after leading a center-left coalition to overthrow the city’s right-wing authorities.

Tommasi, who collected 25 caps for his country and won the Serie A title with Roma in 2001, claimed a surprise victory in the northern Italian city, beating Federico Soborina in Sunday’s run-off.

The former president of the Italian Footballers’ Association won as an independent candidate against Sborina, representing the far-right Brothers of the Italian party.

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Sboarina suffered a split between the right-wing parties and they failed to get support from Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia.

Tommasi was backed by the center-left Democratic Party (PD) and other leftist groups and will now lead the city with a long tradition of right-wing politics.

His victory came on a night when the center-left also won in other important towns like Parma and Piacenza.

Tommasi, 48, was born near the city and began his playing career in Verona, making it a commercial there in 1993 before being sold to Roma three years later.

He played at Capital Club 351 times in a decade, winning his most recent scudetto as part of a star-studded team that includes Francesco Totti and Gabriel Batistuta at the top of his power.

Three years later he suffered a serious knee injury in a friendly against English club Stoke City and agreed a minimum wage of only 1,470 euros ($ 1,555) a month with Roma, knowing he would never play again.

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He later played for Levante and Queen’s Park Rangers and ended his career for the first time since joining Tianjin Teda in China in 2009.

Tommasi led the Footballers’ Association from 2011 to 2020, a role that did not stop him from retiring to play for La Fiorita in San Marino between 2015 and 2019.

He is also known for his controversially denied goal in Italy’s shocking Golden Goal defeat against South Korea in the last 16 of 2002. The world Cup.

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