Thursday, June 26, 2008

Official: Lippi 'New' Italy Coach

The Italian Football Federation has confirmed that Marcello Lippi has been named as the new coach of Italy, succeeding Roberto Donadoni whose two-year reign ended earlier today.

Donadoni’s position became virtually untenable after Italy crashed out of Euro 2008 at the quarter final stage to Spain on Sunday night.

The Italian media have long since claimed that Lippi had already been lined up as his replacement, and the FIGC have now confirmed the 60-year-old’s return.

”Marcello Lippi returns to guide the Italian national team,” a statement reads.

“The president of the FIGC Giancarlo Abete has appointed a new national team coach of the Azzurri in place of Roberto Donadoni. Lippi will be presented next Tuesday, July 1, in a press conference in Rome.”

The Italian Football Federation has confirmed that Marcello Lippi has been named as the new coach of Italy, succeeding Roberto Donadoni whose two-year reign ended earlier today.

Lippi has been on a two year sabbatical since winning the World Cup with Italy in the summer of 2006.

The 60-year-old has stated on numerous occasions that he would be returning to the bench in time for next season, and he will lead the Azzurri into their 2010 World Cup qualifying campaign, hoping to retain the title he won in Germany.

Lippi is expected to bring Ciro Ferrara and Angelo Peruzzi as part of his backroom staff. The latter, who was second choice goalkeeper at the last World Cup will act as a unifying force in the dressing room.

Lippi should also confirm coach Narciso Pezzotti, goalkeeping coach Ivano Bordon, and doctor Enrico Castellacci.

Text Source: Anthony Sormani (
Image Source:

Monday, June 23, 2008

Italy, What a Shame! Spain Through on Penalties

VIENNA (Austria), 22 June 2008 - The adventure is over. Spain beat Italy 4-2 in the penalty shootout and send them packing. The magic of Berlin disappears on a hot Vienna night. After a goalless 120', De Rossi and Di Natale miss their penalties, while Buffon manages to stop Guiza's shot. It's time to turn the page; the world champions are out of this championship.

CONFIRMATIONS - Donadoni starts with the same system he used in their match against France in Zurich. But the 4-3-1-2 sees some forced changes in midfield, due to the absence of Pirlo and Gattuso. The new midfield consists of Roma player Aquilani, from kick-off, on the right, De Rossi in the middle and Ambrosini on the left. And Donadoni keeps his faith in attacking midfielder Perrotta, who plays behind Toni and Cassano. Aragones also makes few changes: 4-4-2, with the usual 4-player midfield with Iniesta on the right and Senna just behind the attacking line.

SPAIN ON A ROLL - The Italians start in attacking mode with good pressing but Spain immediately puts on the brake. The Spanish play wide and at low speed, but they seem to be more in control of the game. On 9' Silva moves to the centre, but his left-footed shot is deflected and then blocked by Buffon. Nothing special, but it's proof that Spain is controlling play. Sampdoria player Cassano is Italy's most inspired player, but although he is a very quick dribbler there is no support for him, and finds himself double marked.

SUFFERINGS - In the 18th minute there's Torres; he enters the box from the left and receives the ball from Iniesta but his shot on goal is too high. This should send a signal to Italy. On that side the Spanish are roaming free: Aquilani cannot bear the weight and he is bogged down by his responsibility. Then, on 19' it's Italy's turn. Ambrosini's cross from the left finds Perrotta but his header lacks power; no problem for Casillas. In the 23rd minute it's again Ambrosini who steps on the accelerator, but he does not pass the ball immediately to Toni, who is clearly lagging behind. Spain come close to scoring with Villa on 25': his free kick finds his way through a group of legs but Buffon catches it on the ground.

CASSANO HAS A GO - Italy seem to come out of their cage, but nobody is taking the lead and Perrotta is having difficulties. Spain is doing better and in the 32nd minute Silva challenges Buffon once again. But it is Cassano who produces some magic four minutes later after having received the ball from Ambrosini; his cross for Toni is perfect, but the striker does not jump: a missed opportunity. The Spanish reaction is fearsome: in the 38th minute Silva hits the bar on Buffon's right from just outside the box. Spain are the better side and Italy is struggling in midfield where De Rossi and Ambrosini have to work extra hard, which reduces the number attacks via Zambrotta and Grosso on the flanks.

CHIELLINI MAGIC - Silva immediately puts his mark on the game in the second half, but Chiellini refuses to budge and there is no way through. The young Juventus players is doing overtime but he needs to make himself heard because his team is not filtering. In the 10th minute Torres muscles Panucci off the ball but his cross is cut out by Chiellini. Italy look ready to surrender. Then on 13' Camoranesi comes in for Perrotta. And the team seriously needs him. In the 16th minute he comes close to scoring but the outstanding Casillas intervenes with his left foot. With Fabregas and Cazorla (Xavi and Iniesta out) Spain has more possession of the ball, but Italy hang in there

MORE TEAM PLAY - Camoranesi has put things in order and restored balance. On 29' Di Natale replaces Cassano, but Spain is in command again. On 35' Buffon punches clear Senna's fierce freekick. And one minute later Italy are saved by the bar when Buffon spills a shot by the same player. Italy try again with Toni, who misses by a few centimetres. And in the 38th minute Toni robs Grosso of a big scoring opportunity when he receives a cross by Di Natale. Torres gets off and Guiza comes on and the final minutes are frenzied. Zambrotta saves Italy by blocking Villa in the 93rd minute.

THRILLS - Extra time is immediately exciting, because in the third minute Villa flashes a shot wide. But two minutes later Italy come close to scoring on two occasions: first Marchena intercepts a pass to Toni then a header by Di Natale's is tipped over. And Italy is kicking itself because they have the best chances. Both teams are now purely relying on instinct and passion. Del Piero comes on for Aquilani on 108'. The Spanish also keep trying; Buffon saves a Villa shot: Italy are struggling hard and in the 120th minute Cazorla drags a shot wide and it's penalty time. And this time Spain do not fail.

Text Source: (
Image Source:

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Italy and Heart, the Euro Adventure Continues. Quarterfinals vs. Spain

The “biscuits” are only Scandinavian. The miracle of bern repeats itself, but this time it is Italian and not German, like in the 1954 World Cup. Italy gets rid of the Portuguese nightmare and advances to the second round. Italy was great against France and while they beat the French team coached by Domenech 2-0, something they have not done in regular time since the 1978 World Cup, The Netherlands beat Romania 2-0, allowing us to advance to the quarterfinals that will be played on Sunday, the 22nd, in Vienna, against Spain.

Pirlo and DeRossi with a goal each in each half give Italy the win after the team dominated a France that came close to scoring only a few times. Donadoni made some changes with respect to match tied last Friday against Romania. Gattuso was back and Cassano starter. Del Piero and Camoranesi were on the bench. Perrotta played behind the forwards, Toni and Cassano.

Domenech kept Thuram out, with Abidal and Gallas in the middle. Up front, Benzema Henry, Malouda on the bench. The match was refereed by the Slovakian Michel. In Zurich it was raining as it had been for the past two days stopping only a couple of hours this afternoon. When the national anthems wer eplayed a splendid rainbow framed the two teams on the field. Italy in white.

The first minutes were played in anh almost surreal silence, both teams seemed to be afraid. Italy has the first occasion on 4’, rebound Toni, Abidal, the ball is there and Toni shoots but his shot goes off to the side. A good occasion. France loses Ribery after only nineminutes after the player clashes with Zambrotta and spains his left ankle. Nasri substitutes. Italy tries again with Panucci haeding the ball the is blocked by Makelele on the net line. Italy is still not lucky. On 22’, Pirlo serves Perrotta who is all alone in front of Coupet, but is not able to control the ball. On 24’, another fantastic pass from Pirlo to Toni, the forward controls perfectly, but just as he is ready to shoot Abidal fouls and Michel grants the penalty kick to Italy and red-cards Abidal. Andrea Pirlo scorse. Buffon does not watch. Italy goes ahead. Nasri goes out and in goes the former Juventus player, Boumsong. Italy almost scores again with a shot from the distance by DeRossi that is just over the crossbar. Italy almost scores again on 28’ with a shot by Toni. Pirlo serves Toni again and his shot is too high.

Another chance for Toni one minute later, but his aim is off. France has a chance with Henry on 34’: the forward from the right tries with a diagonal shot, but his shot is fortunately off to the side. Italy backs up a little and France tries to push ahead. On 43’, Italy is unlucky again: free kick by Grosso and the ball hits the goalpost after a deviation by Coupet (his teammate on the Lyons team). The first half finishes. The second half starti with a chance for France with a shot by Benzema that is too high. Buffon saves on a shot from the distance by Henry. On 10’, the stadium explodes in a cheer because of the goal by Huntelaar.

On 16’, great pass by Cassano for Toni, by the pass from the Sampdoria player is a little too long. One minute later, Italy scores. Free kick from 30 meters, DeRossi shoots, but Henry deviates the ball and sends Coupet off to the other side of the net. Italy is ahead 2-0. The midfielder makes a crazy rush to Gamberoni on the bench, while Materazzi runs to Buffon. CAmoranesi goes in for Perrotta.

Our team has the best goalkeeper in the world and he proves this on 29’ when he deviates a shot by Benzema. Italy controls the match and Alberto Aquilani makes his debut in these European Championships after going in as the nineteenth player used by Donadoni. The match ends, and the team returns to Baden, in five days they play against Spain, and they will have to do without Pirlo and Gattuso, both disqualified.

Here is the scoreboard of the match: FRANCE-ITALY 0-2

France (4-4-2): Coupet; Clerc, Abidal, Gallas, Evra; Govou (21’ st Anelka), Toulalan, Makelele, Ribery (9’ pt Nasri- 25’ pt Boumsong), Benzema, Henry. Substitutes: Frey, Mandanda, Thuram, Squillaci, Sagnol, Vieira, Malouda, Diarra, Gomis. Head coach: Domenech

Italy (4-3-1-2): Buffon; Zambrotta, Panucci, Chiellini, Grosso; Gattuso (36’ Aquilani), De Rossi, Pirlo (10’ st Ambrosini); Perrotta (19’ st Camoranesi); Toni, Cassano. Substitutes: Amelia, De Sanctis, Gamberini, Barzagli, Materazzi, Del Piero, Borriello, Quagliarella, Di Natale. Head coach: Donadoni

Referee: Michel (Svk)
Scorers: 24’ pt penalty kick Pirlo, 17’ st De Rossi

Notes: yellow-carded Evra, Pirlo, Chiellini, Govou, Gattuso, Boumsong, Henry. Recovery 3’ pt, 3’ st. Spectators about 30,585.

Text Source:
FGCI (Italian Soccer Federation)
Image Source: Euro 2008 (

Monday, June 16, 2008

Italy 90’ of Emotion and Bad Luck: All Depends on Tuesday

The score was 1-1 in Zurich. A good Italy, that is not able to beat Romania despite dominating the field. Lobont, the Romanian goalkeeper, was able to save just about everything and in the final minutes Buffon was able to black a penalty kick by Mutu after a foul that only the referee saw, the same referee that in the first half had annulled a regular goal to Luca Toni.

Donadoni chnaged the team with respect to the one that went on the field in Bern. The scheme is 4-2-3-1. Five new players with Grosso, Chiellini, De Rossi, Del PIero and Perrotta. Del Piero captain. Even Piturca lined up his team with three players behind Mutu and Nicolae, but the three are Petre, Codrea and Chivu who are defenders for the most part. Chivu (Inter) and Mutu (Fiorentina) are the “Italian” players for Romania, along with the former “Italians” Lobont (Fiorentina) and Contra (Milan), with the Lazio player, Radu, on the bench.

The two teams start out studying themselves: the place at stake is very high. On 9’, Italy has the first occasion: Camoranesi for Del Piero, the ball is blocked, cross by Perrotta for Del Piero who tries to head the ball, but the ball is deviated by the defender even tough the referee does not give the corner to Italy. Romania tries on 15’ with Mutu, but Buffon is ready.

Italy starts off again and Toni has a good chance but his shot is high. The Azzurri have chances with Grosso down the left touch and Buffon is still ready after a free kick by Tamas from 30 meters off.
Romania almost goes ahead on 19’: free kick by Chivu, ball deviated by the back of Panucci and hits the goalpost, then Zambrotta sends the ball off. The Romanians lose Radoi, injured, and Dica goes in as substitute. Italy again with Grosso for Del Piero whose header goes off to the side on 27’. Italy unstoppable: Toni tries to head the ball, but the net defended by Lobont is untouchable. Romania tries with a shot from the distance by Rat that goes off to the side.

The Azzurri play better, but are not able to score. Italy again on 39’ with Zambrotta from the right, Toni crosses to Perrotta shoes shot is deviated into a corner kick.
Toni heads the ball and Lobont saves, but the ball rebounds and Italy tries again but Lobont sends the ball off. The Azzurri deserve to be ahead. Toni scores, on a cross by Zambrotta, but the referee annulls for an offsides that was not there. Italy is just not lucky.

The first half ends 0-0. The second half begins with Italy pushing ahead, the Romanians, however, play with ten players behind the line. Mutu tries on 9’, but Buffon saves. But Buffon can do nothing on 10’ with Zambrotta fails a back pass with his head, and Mutu gets the ball. For the Fiorentina player the goal is a piece of cake to score. It is a curse, but Italy continues: corner kick by Pirlo, header by Chiellini and Panucci from two meters off, scores, a goal that took four years to score.

Cassano in for Perrotta and on 18’, Cassano invents for Del Piero who sends an assist for Toni who is not able to score. Romania has a chance on 25’ with Nicolae, but Italy saves. Cassano again for Toni, cross for De Rossi, header and miracle by Lobont. Lobont saves again on a header by Toni. Only Italy on the field. But then there is the masterpiece by the referee Henning who on 26’ grants a penalty kick for contact between Panucci and Nicolae, a foul that only the referee saw. But justice does exist and has the shape of Gigi Buffon who blocks the penalty kick by Mutu. The score remains 1-1. On 42’, Italy again but Toni is not able to score after slipping on the cross from Cassano. The Azzurri try in every way possible, but the match remains 1-1. Now we have to wait until Tuesday to see if Italy will continue.

ITALY (4-2-3-1): Buffon; Zambrotta, Panucci, Chiellini, Grosso; Pirlo, De Rossi; Camoranesi (40’ st Ambrosini), Del Piero (32’ st Quagliarella), Perrotta (12’ st Cassano); Toni. Substitutes: Amelia, De Sanctis, Barzagli, Gamberini, Materazzi, Gattuso, Aquilani, Di Natale, Borriello. Head coach: Donadoni

ROMANIA (4-1-3-2):Lobont; Contra, Tamas, Goian, Rat; Radoi (25’ pt Dica); Petre (14’ st Nicolita), Codrea, Chivu; Mutu (43’ st Cocis), D. Nuculae. Substitutes: Popa, Stancioiu, Marica, Sapunaru, Ghionea, Moti, M. Niculae, Cristea, Radu. Head coach: Piturca

Referee: Henning Ovrebo (Nor)
Scorers: 9’ st Mutu (R), 11’ st Panucci (I)

Note: yellow-carded Mutu, Chivu, Pirlo, Goian, De Rossi. Extra-time: 3’ pt, 3’ st. Spectators 30,858

Text Source: FGCI (Italian Soccer Federation)
Image Source: Associated Press

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Registration For the Two Week Italian Soccer School Program Still Open

Football players age 12 to 17 can still register for the Two Week Italian Soccer-Language Program to be conducted on Jekyll Island, GA from June 29th to July 14th, 2008. Camp Directors, Antonio Saviano and Dek Smith said.

According to Dek Smith, Georgia Coast FA Director who is coordination the camp said “the instructors, who come directly from Italy will provide proven teaching methods to our players around the clock to enhance their Italian Soccer Experience. Players will be exposed to the beautiful game and beautiful language every day, on the field, at the poolside, and at every opportunity”.

The Tuition for the full 16 days/15 nights is a total of $1895.00. Tuition not only includes full room and board, training, airport pick up and drop off but also the entry fee for two National 3 vs. 3 tournament on Jekyll Island.

Antonio Saviano, Scuola Calcio – Italian Soccer School Director said, “Players attending the camp will participate in two 3 vs. 3 tournaments, one the first weekend and one tournament for the final weekend of the camp. The 3 vs. 3 National Tournament is a qualifier for the 2008 Challenge Sports National Championships at Walt Disney World. I am sure they will have a great time!”

For additional details, email:

Monday, June 9, 2008

Captain Boost for Donadoni

Italy have received the late boost that Fabio Cannavaro will be able to give a captain's contribution from the dug-out.

The Azzurri skipper, who is already on the road to recovery following last Wednesday's ankle operation, has been given the go-ahead by UEFA to participate in Euro 2008 from the bench.

Meanwhile, Marco Materazzi appears to have done enough in training to convince Roberto Donadoni of a starting slot in place of the Real Madrid player.

The Italy coach appeared relaxed in the final press conference before the match against the Netherlands but refused to shed further light on the World Champions' line-up.

However, Gianluigi Buffon in goal should be protected by a four man defence made up of Christian Panucci, Andrea Barzagli, Marco Materazzi and Gianluca Zambrotta.

In midfield, AC Milan pair Gennaro Gattuso and Andrea Pirlo will more than likely be supported in the centre by AS Roma's Daniele De Rossi with Mauro Camoranesi and Antonio Di Natale out wide.

The Udinese striker, who scored two goals in Italy's defeat of Belgium in the last warm-up match has apparently fended off the challenge of Serie A top scorer Alessandro Del Piero to provide the service for frontman Luca Toni.

Source: SerieA.Tv (

Thursday, June 5, 2008

The #1 and #2 Steps to Success in Anything

Success in anything is simple, but not easy. Today, the simple part – my “Success 2-Step”

The #1 key to success is to decide you are going to succeed.

Personally, the key to my business success is simply my deciding that I will be successful, and then taking action consistent with that belief.

I make mistakes. I do things that don't work.

But I know if I keep going, if I keep my vision at the forefront of my mind I cannot be stopped.

Not by anyone or any thing.

Not as long as I take action consistent with that decision.

It can be different for a baseball player or athlete in a different sport, in that his or her physical gifts may not be there to compete at the highest level.

But the only way to know whether you've been given enough talent is to decide you're going to make your dream come true and act consistent with that belief.

Many, many players are in the Major Leagues who had once been told they couldn't make it. Former Yankee star Scott Brocious told me at every level he every played there were more talent players than he. But he believed and he focused.

And kept going.

Many years ago Winston Churchill apparently gave a 9 word graduation speech:

"Never give up.
"Never give up.
"Never give up."

That was it. Then he sat down. To say more would have muddied his message.

I used to think I understood this idea. I taught it.

And you might be thinking, "Yes, I know that."

But now after watching what happens in my own life and those of others, I get it at a whole new level. And I'm willing to bet there are several layers of understanding still there for you to peal away.

Chances are with greater understanding of the mental game and expertly guided mental training you can peal them away and rocket yourself toward YOUR dream (you have one don't you?).

So, here's that Success Two-Step:
1) decide that you will be successful
2) never give up.

Article written by Dr. Tom Hanson
Heads-Up Performance Inc

For more free mental game coaching articles, visit or

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Mourinho Takes charge at Inter, Insisting Chelsea Stars want to Work with Him Again

APPIANO GENTILE, Italy: Jose Mourinho believes his former Chelsea players want to join him at Inter Milan.

"I think it is normal ... that almost all of them want to work with me in the future," Mourinho said Tuesday after being officially unveiled at Inter's training ground north of Milan. "These rumors are normal."

The Serie A champion's new coach would have to renew hostilities with his former boss Roman Abramovich to lure the likes of Didier Drogba and Frank Lampard from the London club.

Any moves in the transfer market will depend on "if Chelsea wants to sell," said Mourinho, who agreed a three-year contract Monday to replace Robert Mancini.

Mourinho was keen to downplay his self-styled "Special One" nickname.

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"I believe I have arrived at a special club, and when the club is special, a coach becomes one of many," Mourinho said. "I never forget that I am a great coach but I don't want to be special."

The 45-year-old Portuguese manager isn't ready to reveal his transfer targets.

"I want to start a cycle with the same team from last year, plus one, or two, maximum three new players," Mourinho said. "The team will be more or less the same as last year, but I think differently than Roberto.

"This is far from being a criticism, because if Roberto were to go to Chelsea, things would change there. It's normal."

Mancini, who was fired last week despite winning a third straight Serie A title, has been linked to a possible move to Chelsea. Mourinho, who won the 2005 Champions League with FC Porto, suddenly parted company with Chelsea last September after failing to deliver European glory — despite winning two league titles for the London club.

"I will always, always, always support Chelsea and wish them all the best with their new coach, but if Chelsea meet Inter in the Champions League, then I won't know any of them," Mourinho said. "Chelsea is over for me — not in my heart, but in my thoughts. At this moment, I want to start a new life and I do not want to talk about Chelsea."

Mourinho said he was joining the Italian league at the right time.

"The Serie A is not the best championship in the world," Mourinho said. "I believe that the Serie A is on a road that can bring it to be the best in the world."

Mourinho said 11 teams in Europe — four English, three Italian, three Spanish and one German — were targeting the Champion's League title.

"I say without fear that Inter is one of the eleven," Mourinho added.

With key members of his new squad at the European Championship in Austria and Switzerland, Mourinho will have to wait until July to start working on next season.

"If I have waited seven or eight months, I can wait another month," he said, preferring to look ahead and not back.

"Forget who has won. Who won, won. It's history. We need a new book," he said.

Mourinho said he was looking forward to July 15 when the full squad will be assembled for the first time.

"I am both easy and difficult to work with. It is easy for those who work well and know the team is more important than himself. It is hard for those who are lazy and who aren't team players."

Mourinho, who spoke fluently in Italian, was quick to catch on to a reporter's question about how long he'd been studying the language.

"I am very smart," Mourinho said. "You want to know when Inter started to talk to me for the first time," adding that he has been studying Italian for about a month.

Declining for a second time to name Chelsea players on his wish list, Mourino even switched to the Milanese dialect.

"I am not stupid," Mourinho said.

Source: Herald Tribune (

Monday, June 2, 2008

Italy Touchdown for Euros

Italy have begun their European Championship after arriving at their Baden base in Austria.

Coach Roberto Donadoni and his 23-man squad immediately got down to business after an afternoon press conference with an evening training session at the Bundesstadion Sudstadt in Enzerdorf.

Italy are, of course, current World Cup holders and Donadoni said: "The final against France is in the past but we are here to continue the work we started two years ago.

"We deserve to be here and we will take the pitch with the same determination we have already shown."

However, the first session got off to a bad start when captain Fabio Cannavaro had to be stretchered-off with a ankle injury following a challenge from fellow defender Giorgio Chiellini.

The Azzurri will kick-off their tournament on Monday, June 9 against Holland in Berne, Switzerland.

Source: SerieA.Tv (