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The Roar


Italian football's dark days continue

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17th February, 2019

Once upon a time Italian Football dominated the world scene.

Distant memories nowadays of the world best descending to Italy to play in the best league: Serie A.

The top flyers are now struggling and the round ball’s Promised Land is now England.

Serie A is dominated by one club with no credible competitors, the second tier, Serie B, is in a struggle and the tournament started amid legal disputes and is contested by only 19 teams instead of the usual 22.

But most of the problems are in the tier below, Serie C. A shambolic season started lately amid late withdrawals, appeals, teams’ relocation and the admission, for the first time in decades of a ‘B’ team, Juventus under 20.

The terrible season in Italy’s Serie C saw yesterday its lowest point so far.

Players and technical staff of Pro Piacenza, a team in the rich Emilia-Romagna region, are on permanent strike due to unpaid wages, the team has not played the last four matches in the league and will risk to be evicted in case of a fifth forfeit.

The team should play an away game in Cuneo and in the absence of the first team they collected only seven boys, the minimum for a regular match to be played, from the youth team to send to the fixture.

The 16 to 19 years old where captained by Nicola Cirigliano, who was named as trainer as well.


Cuneo decided to “honour” the game and played the obviously one-sided match with their best XI. The result has been a 20-0 (16-0 half time) which will remain for long time as a stain on Italian football.

Last time that a professional team sent the youth squad to play an official game was in May 1949 when Turin was forced to finish the tournament with their colts after the infamous Superga air crash that saw 18 players lose their lives.