Italian football is historically thought of as a place of glamour and excitement, but naturally with those comes the underdog. From the Materazzi myth, to Tony Christmas, to some of the most unlikely title wins in the history of the game, here are Serie A’s underdogs…
Part one: Italian football’s mavericks.
Part two: Serie A icons from the 1990s
Part three: Inter – the Emperor, the choke and the tripleta
Part four: Milan – Maldini, Super Pippo, Kaka and Bunga Bunga
Part five: Juventus – Buffon, Del Piero, Moggi & Baggio
Part six: Roma – Totti, De Rossi, Batistuta and Cassano’s…full life
Part seven: The owners – the mad, the bad and the Moggi
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Materazzi: A True Underdog Story
Some know him as the Matrix, some (in France) know him as the most hated man in football. Jimbo, James Horncastle and Gab Marcotti review the life and times of Marco Materazzi. Derided by many as a red card or a penalty waiting to happen, Materazzi ended his career as a World Cup and treble winner. We all know what happened with Zidane, but in this Golazzo, with the help of former Everton team-mate Don Hutchison, we examine the man behind the Materazzi myth.
Sampdoria’s ’91 Scudetto
Jimbo, James Horncastle and Gabriele Marcotti turn the clock back to May 1991 to look at Inter 0-2 Sampdoria, where the Blucerchiati team featuring Vialli, Mancini and Lombardo were the subject of one of football’s great modern fairytales.
The rises and falls of Parma
Parma, one of the most exciting teams of the 90s, with players like GInafranco Zola, Tino Asprilla, Hernan Crespo, Tomas Brolin and (Dino) Baggio helping them to three European trophies in a decade (four if you count the Super Cup). But that all came crashing down with the club from Emilia-Romagna twice declaring bankruptcy, suffering relegation, and ultimately reforming in Serie D.
Leftie Lucarelli, Livorno legend
Cristiano Lucarelli was the top scorer in Serie A but didn’t believe in separating politics from football. From Che Guevara t-shirts to starting his own newspaper, this tale includes Berlusconi bandanas and Luther Blissett’s role in Italian anarchism.
Victory for Verona – Serie A’s title miracle
We travel back to 1985 to find Italy’s answer to Leicester. Hellas Verona became the only provincial side ever to win the Scudetto, with a team of Preben Elkjær, Hans-Peter Briegel and a collection of cast-offs and misfits.
Zdenek Zeman: Revolutionary manager on and off the pitch
We look back on the career of cult manager Zdeněk Zeman, whose romantic version of playing the beautiful game was way ahead of its time.
Tony Christmas! The Toto Di Natale story
Golazzo wishes you a Happy Tony Christmas! Jimbo, James Horncastle and Gab Marcotti celebrate the career of Antonio Di Natale, who managed to be one of Italy’s greatest ever goalscorers, despite refusing to leave Friuli.
Chievo: when the good guys go bad
A newly promoted Chievo team, managed by a former photocopier salesman, took Serie A by storm in 2001/02, setting the early pace in the title race before narrowly missing out on Champions League qualification. This is the incredible tale of flying donkeys, stolen identity and Christmas cake. And great chips. Where did it all go wrong?
Feast of the Goddess – the Atalanta fairytale
Jimbo, James Horncastle and Gab Marcotti look at the history of Bergamo’s finest in Serie A. It’s a story that involves a thriving academy, match-fixing and Merthyr Tydfil. Plus a healthy soundtrack of songs either dedicated to or performed by the playing staff.
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