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Well, to be fair there were some hints towards the end of the 80s; Juventus won the European Cup in and Milan won it and then again the following By then, Italian clubs, especially AC Milan, established themselves as true football giants and Italy earned a well-deserved place on the European footballing map. The Era of Italian Football Italian football gained such popularity then even in the homeland of football, England, broadcasters aired Italian football and even adjusted time-slots during the weekend in order to be able to air at least two Serie A matches.

The best players of the world, when they were at their best, played for Italian clubs, let us just mention George Weah, Gabriel Batistuta and Ronaldo. Cobra, rejected offers from Barcelona and numerous English clubs, to accept an offer from Internazionale. Later in the period of decline it became common for star players from Italian clubs, both domestic and foreign, to leave Italy and seek success elsewhere, usually in Spain, England, but also Germany, France and even Russia where they received better salaries, prizes and promotions.

There were many strong clubs during the s in Italy and the League was quite competitive, Parma, Sampdoria, Fiorentina, alongside the more successful clubs such as Milan, Inter, Juventus, as well as the two rivals from the capital- Roma and Lazio, all competed at a high level, both home and abroad. In the s Italy was home to some of the top quality strikers and attacking midfielders of the world, such as Crespo, Shevchenko, Trezeguet, Ronaldinho, Vieri , Donadoni, Zinedine Zidane, Roberto Baggio, Del Piero, Pirlo although he plays various positions , Totti and many more.

Of course, there had always been high quality sweepers and full-backs in Italy, as well as goalkeepers. We already mentioned that Milan won two years in a row- and Sampdoria reached the final , and Milan was runner-up the next season.

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Then Milan won again the following The red and black were runners up , and then Juventus won the Champions League The Decline Where did it go wrong? How did the most attractive league in Europe start losing its fans? For one, foreign businessmen invested in English, Spanish and French teams, while most Italian clubs remained in Italian hands. These caused the teams from the three aforementioned countries to become more attractive and thus many top players chose them over Italian squads.


In order to stay competitive in Europe, Italians switched to more defensive football and enforced the famous Catenaccio. But, it was the least of their worries.

Forza Italia

In , one of the most terrible scandals in football happened. It was proved that many games in the league were rigged.

The champions Juventus were stripped of their last two Seria A tittles and were relegated to Seria B, with a 30 point deficit. AC Milan started the following season with a 15 point deficit and Lazio and Fiorentina were also penalised. It all started going downhill from there. The quality of football declined significantly, and this was another reason for Italian football to become slower and more tactical. It soon became clear that neither Italy nor Italian soccer would be boring.

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  7. Paddy covered both stories. In that same period, Argentine Diego Maradona became the uncrowned King of Naples, leading Napoli to a first ever Scudetto title in , notwithstanding a hectic, Hollywood-esque lifestyle that mixed soccer genius with off-the-field excess. Forza Italia is a fascinating tale of inspired players, skilled coaches, rich tycoons, glitzy media coverage, Mafia corruption, allegations of drug taking, and fan power—culminating in the World Cup victory that delighted a nation and a match-fixing scandal that shocked the world.

    Forza Italia: The Fall and Rise of Italian Football

    It is also a personalized reflection on the consistent and continuing excellence of Italian soccer throughout a period of huge social, political, and economic upheaval, offering a unique insight into a society where soccer has always been much more than just a game. Product Details About the Author. Average Review. Write a Review.

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