Friday, February 16, 2007

The route to self-destruction

Is Italian football really intent on killing off what little chance it had of being competitive in Europe? First of all Calciopoli robbed us of half of our best teams in the events. Now we are making them all play in front of little or no crowd.

I know we face a problem more grave than most but I don't remember anyone else inflicting such self-harm after such incidents. There has been plenty of coin throwing, pitch invading and senseless violence across Europe. I don't remember any of those nations bashing ALL their teams over the head because one of them offended.

It always looked like being a bad year but now I can only see failure in both Champions League and UEFA Cup. Our teams were weak enough without having much home support. It is true that the San Siro was often half empty for European games anyway but such limits on capacity will make for a poor atmosphere and definitely assist both Valencia and Celtic. At least Roma get a full house but they face the toughest game of all.


Venezian said...

God, stop being such a pessimist!

Lyon are overrated, Roma are a very good team, who if they concentrate can spring a surprise. Inter are one of the best teams in Europe, whether we want to say that or not, and their early season troubles in the Champions League will not be repeated. And, at the risk of incurring Martino's wrath, Milan should be able to beat Celtic whether they are in good or bad form, whether in front of 80,000 or no one.

Okay, I'm probably being a little too bullish here, but someone had to respond to your spinelessness! (is that a word?!) Yes, our teams in the UEFA did poorly, but Livorno are crap and Parma can easily still go through - plus they are both concentrating on the league rather than the Cup.

TrentToffee said...

You're right I can't think of another example (in Europe) where a *blanket ban* on away supporters, or games to be played behind closed doors has been imposed.

But to be fair they have only imposed the "behind closed doors" restriction on grounds that didn't come up to scratch (i.e. the Pisanu legislation). So In Milan's/Inter's and Roma's case this *shouldn't* affect them in the CL. They all have tough ties ahead of them. But at least one of them should make it the semi's (probably Inter). And after that ? Well, pick your favourite colours.

However, it's in the CL that Inter and Roma have done Italian football (and themselves) most harm - what with abandoned matches and all that. I never knew that the San Siro would often be half empty for CL games. Maybe that's the way forward for Serie A/B/C. Empty stadiums because the Italian public *choose* to stay away. It just might focus a few minds.

martinobhoy said...

No Ginkers, you're right!

The mighty Celtic and their 10,000 fans are on the way. Milan have no chance against this irresistible force!


(I reserve the right to withdraw this post on Wednesday morning.)

ginkers said...


You are right, of course, but you know there are even more pessimistic family members than me.


It would certainly be good if something helped turn around the trend of Italian fans staying away from games.


I don't think this is the greatest Milan team ever but it will take a couple of great performances to knock them out.

Spangly Princess said...

Veneziano: magari! I don't think ginkers is pessimistic enough

and I'm trapped in the snowy north and can't even be there to cheer on my boys on wedensday. Gah. Still over 40,000 tickets had been sold by last thursday so should be a good crowd.

and forza celtic!