A historic day for Italian athletics, graced by a special announcement ahead of the Roma 2024 European Athletics Championships: “I will be there of course. I don’t know how many times, I hope to be present at least at the opening.” President of the Republic Sergio Mattarella said this as he met at the Quirinale with the Italian national track and field team that won the European Cup in Poland and the national modern pentathlon team that became World Team Champions in England.

“The appreciation for you is very great because you convey a message of commitment, sacrifice and dedication,” Mattarella added, congratulating Italian captain Gianmarco Tamberi and all the athletes present.

“Today we learned with infinite joy and extreme satisfaction that President Mattarella wants to be present at the Olympic Stadium already on the opening day of the European Championships and will try to attend the competitions of our champions as many times as possible,” said President of the Italian Athletics Federation and EuroRoma 2024 Foundation Stefano Mei.

The ceremony was also attended by Coni President Giovanni Malagò, Minister of Sport and Youth Affairs Andrea Abodi and Italian Modern Pentathlon Federation President Fabrizio Bittner, as well as Coni Secretary General Carlo Leonardo Mornati and the technical directors and athletes of the two teams.

“These two federations had never been received ‘alone’ in the home of the Italians: it happens because there has been an incredible and repeated series of successes. In 2024 we will have the European Championships at home, where we hope you can honor us with your presence, and then Paris, where we trust that you will make us feel your presence, your affection and expertise, your passion for sports but also the sharing of certain moments,” Malagò said addressing Mattarella.

“Representing Italy is an honor, but it also brings pressure. And this, too often accentuated, injures the innermost part of us. I ask that we recognize our humanity,” Tamberi’s message.