For essentially the most half, Sunday’s outcomes from Serie C, the third stage of Italian soccer, appear like these of some other league world wide: Albissola 1, Arezzo 2. Alessandria Zero, Arzachena 1. Cuneo 20, Pro Piacenza Zero.
That eye-popping rating, and it’s not a typo, is an element of a bigger story. Pro Piacenza 1919 is a venerable workforce from the Emilia-Romagna area of Italy. But the workforce has run into monetary troubles, and most of its gamers and workers members, sick of not getting paid, walked out weeks in the past.
The workforce was penalized eight factors by the federation, dropping it to the all-time low of the standings, and forfeited three straight matches.
One extra forfeit and the workforce may very well be disqualified from the league.
So for Sunday’s go to to Cuneo, it was crucial that some type of workforce be produced. Pro Piacenza, generally known as the Rossoneri, or Redblacks, scrambled. It mustered up some youngsters from the youth workforce, and a workforce masseur, for a complete of eight gamers. The masseur’s quantity was swiftly added to his uniform with tape. One of the children, Nicola Cirigliano, was appointed the player-manager.
Unfortunately one of many gamers, recognized by the Italian press as Isufi, had forgotten his ID card and couldn’t go well with up, leaving the workforce with simply seven gamers, the minimal allowed earlier than an computerized forfeit.
The sport progressed as you’d anticipate with seven inexperienced gamers going in opposition to 11. Cuneo handed at will, dribbled at will, and roughly scored at will. A spotlight video is nice viewing in the event you take pleasure in discouraged gamers trudging again to the middle circle after yet one more aim. Cuneo went into the break up by 16-Zero.
Good information for Pro Piacenza: Isufi’s father retrieved his figuring out paperwork, permitting him to hitch the sport. Bad information for Pro Piacenza: the masseur needed to go away the sport with a cramp.
In the top, Cuneo let up a bit, resulting in the 20-Zero last rating.
Hicham Kanis wound up with six targets, Edoardo Defendi had 5, and hat methods by Francesco De Stefano and Michele Emmausso had been nearly unnoticed.
To be clear, though Serie C is a far cry from Juventus, the Milan giants and the high-quality play of Serie A, it’s nonetheless a totally organized soccer league.
Pisa, in the identical division as Pro Piacenza, attracts a mean of 5,000 followers a sport. The winner of the division will head as much as Serie B, solely a stage beneath the likes of Ronaldo, Paulo Dybala and Ciro Immobile.
But a number of groups at this stage have struggled financially, amongst them Cuneo, the profitable workforce Sunday. Matera has missed 4 matches and been disqualified.
The Italian press didn’t like what it noticed.
La Gazzetta dello Sport known as the match grotesque, “one of the saddest and surreal pages of Italian professional football.”
Even a player on the winning side was embarrassed. “I feel only shame for those who made all this possible,” Fabiano Santacroce said.
Francesco Ghirelli, the Serie C president, told Radio Rai that a game like that “must never happen again.”
And on Monday he made sure it wouldn’t: Lega Pro, the governing body for Serie C, announced on Monday that Pro Piacenza had been kicked out of the league.