The Italian Almanac

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Ilary Blasi and Francesco Totti

Italian News - November 16

Italy's most talented and popular footballer, Francesco Totti, is to be a father for the second time. The AS Roma star's wife, Ilary Blasi, announced that she is four-months pregnant in an interview. The couple already have a one-year-old boy, Cristian.

Blasi, who is a model and TV presenter, was heavily pregnant with Cristian when they wed in June 2005. Totti is an extremely proud father. Since becoming a dad he has taken to celebrating his goals by sucking his thumb, baby-style.

The news of extra paternity commitments is likely to dispel hopes that Totti will return to action with the Italian national team soon. The playmaker-striker has taken a sabbatical from national duty, as he seeks to recover peak form. Totti was only semi-fit during Italy's triumphant World Cup campaign in Germany and did not live up to his billing as the Azzurri's key player as a result. He has said he will not return to international action until next year.