Tag Archive: Serie A

Immigration may seem a peculiar topic when talking about sport, but it is a subject that has been on my mind since Mo Farah became one of Britain’s most beloved sporting stars.

Icon | Mo Farah is idolised as a British sporting hero, putting him in the 'good immigration' bracket. (Image | NME)

Icon | Mo Farah is idolised as a British sporting hero, putting him in the ‘good immigration’ bracket. (Image | NME)

Few in this country will forget the sight of Farah winning gold in the 5,000 and 10,000 metres at the London 2012 Olympic Games: yet after the latter victory, Somali-born Farah had to deal with a journalist asking if he would have preferred to have run for Somalia, rather than Britain.

The 30-year-old gave the question short shrift, and has since developed into a sporting superstar, building on last year’s gold medals with two more at the World Athletics Championships last month.

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Not so super? | This could be a regular match-up should the European Super League ever be seriously considered by the powers that be. (Image | Bleacher Report)

The European Super League. It has been talked about for a long time, but will it ever actually happen? Writing in September 2012 and looking ahead, in two years time a European Super League could be on the agenda.

This is because in 2014 the agreement that is in place between FIFA, UEFA and Europe’s leading clubs expires. As the leader of the European Club AssociationKarl-Heinz Rummenigge points out, said teams will be free to do what they want. However, would they actually look to create a super league?

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On the crest of a wave | Could a playoff system work in the Premier League? (Image | TalkSPORT)

The Premier League (EPL) is the most watched sports league in the world with over 4.7bn viewers per year. It is by far the most popular league in Europe – but why is this?

Some argue that it is the quality of the players, others the notoriety of the brand and still more the style of play.

It is difficult to pinpoint a single reason, but what is for certain is that the Premier League, since its birth in 1992, has been able to market itself better globally than any of its European rivals.

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Allegations: The investigation into Lazio midfielder Stefano Mauri has inevitably drawn comparisons with the highly-damaging 2006 scandal. (Image | The Daily Mirror)

Lazio captain Stefano Mauri has been arrested by police investigating fresh allegations of match-fixing in Italian football. Head coach of Juventus, Antonio Conte, is also being questioned, as well as Domenico Criscito, a member of Italy’s 25-man squad for the European Championships.

In 2006 the match-fixing scandal commonly referred to as “Calciopoli” emerged. It resulted in the demotion of Juve, who were stripped of two Serie A titles, and points deductions for other teams, including AC Milan and Fiorentina.

The events of this year were extremely damaging for Italian football, in particular prompting the mass exodus of star players from Turin, and affecting the quality and reputation of the Serie A. According to the BBC’s Alan Johnston, the investigation has been going on for some time.

“For many months now this investigation into match-fixing in the Italian game has been widening and deepening. While up to now much of the suspicion has fallen on teams and players in the lower divisions of the game, the prestigious Serie A is increasingly being drawn into the scandal.

“More painful and damaging, allegations and revelations lie ahead.”

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All hail the (nearly) invincibles

Alessandro Del Piero is Juventus’ all time leading goalscorer, and his name is synonymous with the club. He will be a free agent from this summer after nearly 20 years at the club. (Image | Wikipedia)

Forever remembered as a golden time for Italian football, 2006 saw the national side winning that year’s World Cup. But Italy’s international glory was sullied by a story much closer to home. It can be summed up in one word: calciopoli.

The scandal that rocked Italian football sent shockwaves throughout Serie A, and those tremors were felt most keenly at Juventus. The then reigning champions were stripped of their two previous league titles, and demoted to Serie B, starting the following season on -9 points. This was incredibly damaging to the Old Lady, arguably Italian football’s most famous club side. Unsurprisingly, a lot of the playing and coaching staff didn’t come to Turin to work in the second tier.

As a result there was a mass exodus.

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Spot the difference: Inter’s “Rambo” netted a hat trick against city rivals AC Milan, and has a goal scoring ratio of more than a goal per two games for Stramaccioni’s side.

A derby day hat-trick from Diego Milito downed Inter’s city neighbours Milan during the Derby della Madonnina, handing the title to Juventus in the process. Their record-setting 28th Scudetto win was confirmed as they roamed to a comfortable 2-0 victory against Cagliari, sending them four points ahead at the top of Serie A with just the one game remaining. The “Rambo” lookalike made the all-important difference in what was a pulsating game at the San Siro, netting two from the penalty spot after opening the scoring with a close range finish.

The 4-2 victory ended any hopes Milan had of retaining their league title, while Inter knew anything less than three points would run them out of contention for the final Champions League qualification spot. As it is, their chances are incredibly slim: they must beat Lazio next week and hope both Napoli and Udinese fail to pick up any points in their respective games.

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