Pre-Match. Stadio Artemio Franchi, Florence.1983.

1 Leave a comment on verse 1 0 Just what to expect? I’d no idea
As kick off time approached
La Viola flares ringing in my ears
I zipped up my winter coat.

2 Leave a comment on verse 2 0 Water cannon in the crowded streets
Had warned me, be concerned
While la polizia checked out Florentines
On their way to a fraught return.

3 Leave a comment on verse 3 0 Wild boar on spits were roasting,
Panninis and sickly tripe
Near a stadium that was hosting
La Viola’s chance to put wrong right.

4 Leave a comment on verse 4 0 As Gaddafi led his team-mates up *
From a ramp behind the goal
La Viola partisans erupted
Throwing cans and stale bread rolls.

5 Leave a comment on verse 5 0 Paolo Rossi looked a kid at most
Zbiggy Boniek a slouch
Michel Platini smiling, stayed in close,
Away from the angered crowd.

6 Leave a comment on verse 6 0 Italy as worthy World Champions
Seemed an absolute age ago
To La Viola mugged in the previous campaign
Un’anziana signora da Torino. **

7 Leave a comment on verse 7 0 A violet smoke spread o’er the pitch
Swearing filled the air
As experienced players strolled a bit
With the youngest looking scared.

8 Leave a comment on verse 8 0 Quickly back down the ramp, they went
To get changed before the match
As the frenzied Viola continued to vent
Rabid frustration, on the champions.

9 Leave a comment on verse 9 0 West London never gets like this
I thought with some relief
As La Viola angrily screamed and hissed:
“Meglio secondo di ladri ***


A pretty scary day at the match this and no messing, I know coz I was there.

Juve travel to the beautiful city of Florence, to play Fiorentina (La Viola). It didn’t seem to matter a jot that the previous summer, Italy had won The World Cup in Spain, with the majority of players coming from Juve.

What La Viola fans were more interested in was revenge for a dubious penalty awarded and converted by Liam Brady, the previous season that had given Juve the Scudetto, when elsewhere La Viola had two or three goals dis-allowed in a game that they eventually drew, but had needed to win to take the Scudetto.

That season’s dodgy end is still painful for fans of La Viola who feel that they were well and truly stitched up, after all it’s not the first time that Juventus aided by Gianni Agnelli’s millions made through the Fiat motor company have been accused of this sort of thing is it?

Oh and by the way this wonderful game ended in a 3-3 draw.

* Claudio Gentile was nicknamed Gaddafi as he looks like and was born in Tripoli, Libya, as was your man The Colonel.

** Should translate as (hopefully): By an old lady from Turin.

*** Should translate as: Better to be second than thieves.



Source: https://footballpoets.org/poems/pre-match-stadio-artemio-franchi-florence-1983/