“I haven’t missed a game since I was 13.”
Meet the new issue of the documentary series “Palych Was Here” – about the football traditions of Italy.
Yuri Semin and Sasha Aksenov met with big fans of Roma and Lazio – and also talked with a guy who has supported Lokomotiv since childhood.
“I haven’t missed a game since I was 13.” Love for Lazio or Roma comes from parents
• Francesco Cuomo has been a Lazio fan for 48 years. He owns a bar in Rome and has tattoos there. “Lazio is the first club in Rome, it was founded in 1900. Roma was formed in 1927 as a result of the merger of all the small teams. They banded together to oppose us.
I support Lazio because it’s a tradition. In Rome, it’s hard not to root for your parents’ team. I have three daughters, so I’m a fourth generation fan and the fifth is on the way. I’ve been sick since birth, but I’ve been following very closely – I don’t miss a single game – since I was 13 years old, ”Cuomo admitted.
According to Francesco, the fans of Roma and Lazio are very different – not only in the stands, but also in everyday life: “These are two completely different lifestyles. Novelists are more conspicuous, make noise, show themselves. The Lazio fans are more restrained, more closed, celebrating less violently.
It seems to Cuomo that football has begun to lose passion: “Today, many people watch football because they root for one player, not for a team. When we were kids, there was nothing for me but Lazio. Dot.
It’s the same in the stadium: when I was a teenager, it was more dangerous there, more passion. Today it is more for families: some performances, music, laser show, fireworks. It has become American.”
• Yuriy Palych and Sasha Aksyonov visited Testaccio, the district of Rome where Roma’s first stadium is located, where almost everyone supports this club.
Flavio Capparucci has been a Roma supporter for 57 years and now runs a 52 year old fan club (one of the oldest in Rome). “If I divorce my wife, I will move here,” Capparucci laughs.
Flavio just loves football and Roma: “It’s like a disease. We say that it’s better to change your wife, party, place of residence, even gender – but you can’t change the football team.
The Italian word “ultra” means that a person goes beyond ordinary pain. It’s not when I saw him and immediately beat him. This is when I saw him and was like, “Let’s go have a beer.”
• Semin and Aksyonov even found a guy in Italy who has been a fan of Loko since childhood – he knows Russian and enjoys Palych and other club legends. “It all started in 2010,” shares Stefano Conforti. – I am half Russian, I found several sites and looked at the results of the games there, the most elementary things.
I immediately liked Lokomotiv, because red and green are the colors that I really liked. After reading about such legends as Sychev, Loskov, about their achievements, I imagined myself in their place and it attracted me.
Italy – through Semin’s vivid memories: the delight of Baggio’s free kicks and a conversation with Cristiano
• In 1993, Semin first came to Italy as a coach – then Loko burned out to Juventus (0:3). “Roberto Baggio scored 2 free throws, as if he threw a hand. Before that, they had a warm-up and I watched. After it, [Baggio] set 10 balls – and 8 [times] hit one spot.
I told our people: “Please, put up a wall on impact. Take a step forward and stand on your toes. It still didn’t work out, although the trick is working if the judge doesn’t notice,” says Yuriy Palych.
• Let’s digress a bit from Italy and remember the 1994 World Cup – then Yuriy Palych drove Pavel Sadyrin’s assistant to the USA. At that tournament, Russia did not even leave the group with the Brazilians, Swedes and Cameroonians (3rd place) – according to Semin, the “Letter of Fourteen” strongly influenced.
Let us briefly recall: before the 1994 World Cup, a group of national team players demanded an increase in fees and the resignation of the head coach.
“There was the strongest team, the most talented players. If it were not for this turmoil … Many of them would not have gone. We received the first contracts, became rich, it seemed to them that everything was possible. This ruined them,” says Yuri Palych.
• And now – back to the Italians. In 2003, there was a historic defeat of Inter – Yuri Palych’s gang won 3-0. Already in the 2nd minute, Loskov shot the top corner of Toldo’s goal, and in the second half, Ashvetia and Khokhlov committed a pogrom. Thanks to this victory, Loko flew into the playoffs of the Champions League. “Look what players Inter had: Vieri, Recoba, Italian national team players,” recalls Semin.
• Fast forward to October 2019 and Semin tells how he met Cristiano Ronaldo.
“I went to the football field. Cristiano talked, I greeted him, and we exchanged a few words. Cristiano then said: “Coach, you play a lot in defense …”. And I answered: “You didn’t let us get out of defense.”
But we played with dignity, it was not for nothing that after this match Alexei [Miranchuk] was invited to play in Italy.” Then Juventus beat Loko 2:1, thanks to Paulo Dybala’s brace. As part of the Muscovites, just Miranchuk was noted.