Monday, 23 April 2007

campioni (alas)

bastards. That's the unacceptable face of football, right there.

(Actually, I confess a small and wholly unanticipated softspot for Big Marco, based on his azzurri exploits. You can't hate a man who put a hat on the world cup).

still they clearly deserve it. With 5 games to go, 84 points andwhat's currently a 16 point gap, played 33 won 26 drawn 6 lost 1 (yay) you can't argue with that. Scored 68 conceded 29. Championship form in any league, and their scudetto - their 15th in all, and the first won on the field of play in 18 years. I hope they enjoy it. (I think they are doing). Piazza del Duomo:in another year, with Milan at normal strength and Juve up, who knows what would have happened. We've had a great season by any standards, retain the lowest goals against score in the league (26) and can't complain about our second place at all. This Inter is hardly Herrera's but it's still an impressive side.

Only 5 giornate to go... and it's a non-international football summer. Already I have the 'oh god no football what now' feeling that afflicts the summers of odd-numbered years. Still we have the derby next weekend, time to start feeling nervous...


TrentToffee said...

Soft spot or not, you'd still want to give him your best punch in the mouth. In case you're wondering where Marco's robust game comes from, well he had a great mentor in big Dunc (Ferguson) from his - brief - time at Everton. Except big Dunc was a much more honest player, which explains why he was so well loved at Goodison.

If were an Inter fan I wouldn't be partying too hard. I'm looking forward to what Aussie Romanista has to say :o)


p.s. You should be writing a regular slot for WSC, or Calcio Italia, or even Shoot.

de vertalerin said...

Ah well - the Giro, TdF, a couple of cricket matches in England and it'll be August.

At least Spurs didn't manage to beat us. Bastard referee with his 5 minutes of extra time.

de vertalerin said...

Oh, and what TT said.

Spangly Princess said...

TT, I nearly mentioned the Everton connection. My ex-fiancé was a toffee, I used to go to Goodison a fair bit with him, and retain a great affection for them. My understanding was that most Evertonians thought he was a useless waste of space. AS opposed to DuncanDisorderly who was, in my ex's words, "mostly a useless bastard, but he's OUR useless bastard."

And thanks! I had a short piece on ultras in March's WSC, and am hoping to get in touch with Calcio Italia via Ginkers. Feel free to email WSC demanding more articles from me!

Pat said...

Ah the summer will breeze by while we all celebrate Milans 7th CL title *knock on wood*.

Inter deserve their title, Hopefully Juve return to title challengers along with Milan, Fiorentina and Lazio and it will be a good season next year, particularly if Palermo also return to winning ways.

I have to admit to liking Marco. A character like him keeps the game alive. I saw a video of him with a few of the other Italian players juggling the ball and he muffed it and they all kicked him as a joke and he took it pretty well. I think he's one of those guys who needs to be angry on the pitch to be focused

anyway, FORZA MILAN!!

Anonymous said...

Here it is Trent:

"in another year, with Milan at normal strength and Juve up, who knows what would have happened"

Bullshit. We all know what would have happened. Because this Inter team are nothing special, Ibra and Vieira wouldn't have gone there, Zambro and Canna would still be at Juve... need I go on?

The cardboard scudetto patches are being glued on to the Inter shirts for next season as we speak.

I can't believe that my fellow Romanista put those pictures up of Piazza Duoma etc. Che vergogna! Ruined such a beautiful place. Your blog Prinipessa I know, but come on.

Here's a common chant by Inter fans at the San Siro in the last 20 years for nerazzurri home games: "Siete voi, siete voi... La vergogna dell'Italia siete voi!!!". Never more true than today.


Spangly Princess said...

AR I only partially agree, cos at a certain level it seems like you want to have your cake and eat it. You were happy that Juve went down, right? that Milan, Lazio et al had points penalties, right? Because if so then you have to accept the championship that follows as 'real' I'm afraid. I felt that the reductions on appeal were wrong, myself, but that's not Inter's fault. Without wanting to veer into 'you can only beat the team in front of you, Brian' territory it's hard to see what they could have done this season that they haven't.

Oh yeah, they could have played sparkling joyous football. Ha. a) they're inter, so that's never going to happen, b) up to a point., I tend to think so what, if you win anyway. Win as ugly as you like so long as you win. (you can take the girl out of Arsenal but you can't etc etc). I'd rather win pretty, of course, but I'd rather win ugly than lose pretty. That sort of shite is for spurs fans.

So far as putting up nerazzurri pics: well, I know... but it's my own (small) acknowledgement of their achievement. Unlike Ginkers, for instance, or Pat, my blog is not about Serie A or Italian football as a whole. (Anyone who can pin down what it is actually about, do let me know). So there's no 'obligation' to talk about Inter at all, obviously. But it would I think have been an omission! Much prettier and more interesting pictures are about to be put up.

ginkers said...

I admit Materazzi bugs me in an Inter shirt but I admire what he did for Italy. And I know if it was my team in their position I would still be out celebrating whether it was a devalued Scudetto or not.

Looking forward to next season, though, with Juve back, Milan rejuvenated (maybe), Roma getting a bigger squad to pick from, Palermo getting Amauri back and, of course, Fiorentina's young guns beating the whole lot of them into submission!

Anonymous said...

No I wasn't happy about Juve going down. I believe the club had to pay a price, and that price should have been simply "addio Moggi/Giraudo". It was a trial by media over nothing but hype and what was perceived to have occurred. Moggi puffing his chest and intimidating other clubs and referees. But there is no evidence that any single match was ever rigged. It was all innuendo and perception because Moggi talked himself up on the phone.

The players didn't go out on to the park thinking that they already had matches won. Maldini didn't purposely allow Del Piero to send in that spectacular zico-cross on to Trez's head to beat Milan. Juve went out and won because they were the best side, nobody has denied that, no matter what went on behind closed doors. It was all a load of bullshit. If you want scandal, the German referees showed up the Italians a million times over and at least one of them is doing time for it. THAT is a match fixing scandal. Calciopoli was a load of shit that had to happen because of pressure by the media. Juve had to be seen to pay a price for the rest of the league because it is the biggest club.

So no, to see such champions of the game's history like Del Piero, Nedved and Buffon playing against Albinoleffe and Rimini is a travesty for Italian football on the whole.

If my Roma win a scudetto I want it to be because Hidetoshi Nakata (a quality foreign player at Roma in 2000/01) comes off the bench and scores a ripper and sets up an equaliser against the mighty FC Juventus.
I wouldn't want my Roma to bundle the ball over the line and then score a penalty at the Artemio Franchi di Siena to win a devalued scudetto, with no Juve in the league and Milan not in the contest.

Maybe I think this way because I've grown up following it from the other side of the world so I don't get pelted with everything anti-Juve that goes on in Rome or Italy.
If there is ever a season that Roma don't win the scudetto, this is the one I'd choose, because there is always going to be a "but Juve weren't there" against Inter's name for 2006/7. I don't think I'm biased for Roma or against Inter. As I've said, it's more about Italian football as a whole for me. This is just how I see it. Inter embarass me as an Italian football lover. For their emphasis on foreigners, for their disgusting fans (I know they aren't the only ones), for constantly playing the innocent victim when they are not, for everything. I actually hate the club, because they have given plenty of reason to hate them.
Most people who hate Juve do so only because their fathers told them to. But that is jealousy which is the greatest form of flattery. I admire Juve and I would love Roma to be as good as that club, just as fans of every other club would want their club to be like Juve.

I'd like to apologise for my long posts recently. I'm very opinionated on this subject but I don't want to annoy people by waffling on... over and out!


Pat said...

Inter do play ugly football, but lets not forget in the sixties as the greatest exponent of catanaccio they won 2 European cups and could've had more if not for that classic Celtic side.

I think to some extent that catanaccio culture still exists in the club and hence why they are so reluctant to play a Barcelona-like style of football.

Obviously there are other cause for their style and catanaccio doesn't explain their crowds, but I hate people who say a team isn't any good because they don't play pretty. For me football is about tactics and while a team playing 'pretty football' can often lose, ie Arsenal's current side or Brazil's current side, a team playing a better tactical game then their opposition very rarely lose.

In history their are planty of asterix's. Lets not forget if it wasn't for the war Juve may not have been the biggest team in Turin, let alone Italy. So I guess you can put an asterix next to every competition since then. Or maybe every comp after Mussolini for Inter to merge with Ambrosiana (?)

I dont totally disagree with you AR but even if there is an asterix next to inters scudetto titles, I for one won't be looking at the bottom of the page for the footnote and I imagine a lot of others won't either.

What is important for Inter is the winning culture they are breeding and if they can get CL or another scudetto next season they could become a major threat to the Milan-Juve dominance of the last decade or 2.

Pat said...

should be *forced* not *for* in the post above - "Mussolini for Inter to merge with Ambrosiana"

Spangly Princess said...

AR I can't agree at all with your views on Juve. Maybe as you say being insulated from them by distance you've not developed the same feelings for them as everyone else. An awful lot of people here hate Juve more than their own team's derby rivals. That's not because they've been told to. It's because they've seen the favours granted to the club over the years.

You should check out Luigi Garlando's Nostra Signora del Dischetto. Peccati dell'area e miracoli: storia dei rigori dati (o regalati) alla Juve nei campionati a girone unica He analyses 452 Juve penalties in detail. (Some people do get a bit obsessive about this, I'll grant you). Pre-Calciopoli the theory was that this litany of doubtful or wholly false penalties awarded to Juve was that 'referees were so impressed and intimidated by Juve's reputation that they unconciously erred in their favour.' Hmm.

And I think it's a serious mistake to underestimate the system of favours on which Italy still runs in so many regards. The idea that money has to change hands or firm decisions made or explicit discussions held in order for something to be arranged is so.... crude... northern european.

Plus as Pat says are we going to go back through history sayig 'well that year X broke his leg' or 'Y's manager left unexpectdly' or 'Z had a financial crisis' and that therefore those scudetti don't count?

TrentToffee said...

If I may be allowed my two peneth. I'd have to side with AR on the Juve front. The two titles they were stripped of didn't require any match fixing, they were the best team by miles, simple as that.

I don't understand the fixation with hating Juve, nor with analysing 452 penalty decisions that *allegedly* counted in their favour. But then, I'm not Italian.


p.s. Bless you for your fondness of the Toffees. Like Jessica Rabbit, You aren't all bad, you're just drawn that way :o)

Anonymous said...

In A Season With Verona, Tim Parks pretty much states that Juve, Inter and Milan all get favoured by the referees just because they're the biggest clubs. I think that all three have benefited from many wrong refereeing decisions, and Inter should never have complained because they got plenty, too.

A perfect example of the disgraceful complaining that has become so normal at Inter was after our 2-1 victory over them at the San Siro last season. Moratti, Facchetti and everyone else raved on and on about Nedved being a diver (I don't care what anyone says - that free-kick that Del Piero scored the winner from was rightly given!). Nobody even noticed that Walter Samuel had used Patrick Vieira as a ladder when scoring the (short-lived...fuckers!!!) equaliser. How could Walter Samuel ever out-jump Patrick Vieira? Impossible!

When refereeing decisions went Juve's way it was usually blown out of proportion. Take two incidents from the past one or two seasons, for example: whether Zalayeta was fouled outside of the area when Juve beat Roma 2-1 at the Olimpico (I thought he was right on the line, but, even if he wasn't, what referee wouldn't have given a penalty after seeing it once and in real-time) or how Del Piero was offside when he scored the only goal at home to Udinese (the linesman was on the far side from Del Piero, and he had little line of sight as there were a number of players between him and Del Piero). You may say that I'm just wearing black-and-white tinted glasses, and maybe I am, but I think those examples are human error, not corrupted match officials, but the officials were scathed in both instances.

But also consider that many errors that go against us do not get analyzed so closely when they happen, or remembered afterwards. We lost a scudetto when forced to play on Lago Renato Curi di Perugia. Remember Buffon being practically raped when Inter scored their equaliser against us at San Siro in 02/03. Hell, we even lost a European Cup to a goal that should have been ruled out for offside: Mijatovic was offside when Roberto Carlos shot from the edge of the area when Real Madrid beat us in 1998.

I'm not bitter about that scudetto lost in 2000 or losing that final in 1998 (I just haven't forgotten!). We lost a huge lead in the last two months to Lazio, and we didn't impose ourselves as we should have against Madrid. The team that wins always deserves to. Just like in 04/05 and 05/06.

And Moggi??? Well he was an excellent transfer guru (Cannavaro for Carini still makes me laugh). He also bragged that Ratzinger didn't get elected Pope until he signed with his son's agency GEA...

- Juventino

P.S. I hate Materazzi only slightly less than I did before, and during the World Cup. Especially after saying that this scudetto is worth more than that.

P.P.S. Sorry, Princess. I know your blog entry was about Inter, but who gives a shit about them. Fra un masturbatore e un interista non passa differenza alcuna: l'uno e l'altra si inventano un realta` e si procurano l'orgasmo.

Pat said...

Just for arguements sake, say Juve were the best team on the pitch, do they still deserve the title if they acted improperly off it?

If so, then what other activities are you allowed to do off the pitch as long as you are percieved to be the best on it? drug your players perhaps? (ohh yes, Juve did that), Perhaps dodge your finances? (ohh yes, they did that too apparently)

If we really want a clean game then inproper actions off the field shouldn't be over looked because of how good people think your team is.

I believe.

Milan Champions League Winners '07.

Anonymous said...

Dodgy finances? Juve has been the best-run club in Italy for a decade, in financial terms. For about a decade up until this season Juve have been run independently from FIAT/the Agnelli family, surviving on its own profits. So you're absolutely dead wrong there.

And you probably shouldn't mention dodgy finances on the blog of a romanista...

As for the drugs...well, 281 (or so) different substances is ridiculous, but Dr. Agricola and Giraudo were both cleared, and the only Juve players to test positive to anything in recent times were Blasi (who was on loan to Parma at the time) and Davids (which seemed to be more of a dutch thing, as Stam and one of the De Boers also tested positive around the same time).

That was another witch-hunt that targetted Juve, I shown by Cannavaro's home video on the eve of Parma's UEFA Cup final in 1999.

Everything we won, we won on the field. We deserve all those titles. Acted improperly? Everyone did. That was (and maybe still is...who knows?) the culture. It would have been interesting if everyone's phones had been tapped, but the links between Inter & Moratti, TIM and Guido Rossi saw to that!

- Juventino

P.S. Dida is shyte. Kaka is the best player in the world. And you can have Trezeguet for Gilardino. We'll turn him into the brilliant striker he ought to be.

Spangly Princess said...

hehe well since the finances are brought up... Juve are probably the last culpable in that regard. Certainly we've had.. issues. Sensi is not ideal. And Lazio, or Parma anyone?

I think it's unfair to say that Juve have been a the sacrificial lamb though, and that no-one else has been handed out compatable punishments. The tifosi of Genoa and Florentina (sorry, Florentia Viola...) might have something to say about that.

Anonymous said...

Being caught handing over a suitcase full of cash is much more substantial than any evidence against Juve.

Any resentment that Fiorentina fans have for being relegated because of insolvency ought to be directed at clubs like Roma, Lazio and Parma. Not Juve.

- Juventino

Pat said...

i read somewhere that Juve were alleged to have falsely reported transfer fees to avoid taxes. Now I know a lot of stuff hasn't stuck to Juve or can't be proven, but can they really be innocent of everything Juventino??

As for the punishment Juve did recieve, I think they got what they deserved. Milan and Lazio got relegated the last time a match fixing scandal hit Italy. Now I don't know a lot about it, but that sets a precident in my mind. The others involved should probably have got harsher punishments, but if you think there wasn't a lot of good evidence against Juve, there was even less for a club like Milan (Note: I have an extreme bias toward Milan).