Stephan El Shaarawy scored the winner for Roma against Monza at the weekend, marking the culmination of a rollercoaster week on and off the pitch.
Here is a day-to-day account of what the week entailed.
Tuesday 17th – Starts for Italy
After being drafted into the Italy squad the week before, Stephan El Shaarawy earned his first international cap since March 2021 when his former Roma manager Luciano Spalletti started him in a Euro 2024 qualifier against England. Playing as a left winger, he lasted for 87 minutes. El Shaarawy described it as an “emotional moment” in his career to be back lending his experience to the national team.
Wednesday 18th – Named in betting scandal
After allegations launched against several other players, gossip columnist Fabrizio Corona claimed El Shaarawy was involved in the betting scandal currently overshadowing Italian football.
Thursday 19th – Lawyers deny accusations; Roma release statement
There was no evidence of any wrongdoing by El Shaarawy, though, so he was not under investigation after all. His lawyers confirmed he had not bet and Roma released a statement pledging their faith in his innocence (along with Nicola Zalewski, who had also come under accusation).
Friday 20th – Confirmation he’ll sue
Due to the tarnishing of his reputation, it was confirmed by lawyers that El Shaarawy had decided to sue Corona (as would Lazio defender Nicolo Casale, whose name was thrown out at the same time).
Saturday 21st – Mourinho stays calm; El Shaarawy releases statement
At a press conference before Sunday’s match against Monza, Jose Mourinho said he was “very calm” about the situations with El Shaarawy and Zalewski. That same day, El Shaarawy released his own statement reflecting his innocence.
Sunday 22nd – Scores winner v Monza
Towards the end of a tough match against Monza, which was goalless at the time, El Shaarawy came on for Roma and ultimately scored the winner with a volley in the 90th minute for his first goal contribution of the season. He left the pitch in tears afterwards, moved by the emotion of the week he had endured and the happy ending he wrote for himself.