The first real hard man of my Calcio memory, he snarled beneath a bushy moustache.
There was venom and vicious intent in everything he did as he patrolled the midfield for Milan, Juventus and Italy to most devastating effect.
An irony, lost on nobody, in his romantic name Romeo.
Yet there was more to Benetti than just the bone-snapping tackles as he carved out a role Rino Gattuso would ape in future.
There were trophies galore and plenty of caps as his tactical awareness and eye for goal proved that he was not the one-dimensional thug some portrayed him as.