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Number of posts : 734
Age : 39
Country and city : Italy, Rome
Laziale since : I was born
Registration date : 2008-05-26

PostSubject: Re: Too much difference   Sat May 31, 2008 12:10 am

Too much difference

There is not even time to celebrate the heroic Pisa’s victories: history is waiting for Lazio to write another memorable page. Since Pisa, Lazio was a more mature and respected team. The eagle flies high, opening her huge wings towards her fate.
In August 1907 Lazio is invited to Perugia to participate at the Concorso Ginnico Interprovinciale, to be held in the days 31 August-1 September, where Lazio is supposed to play against Siena in a demonstration football match. And what a demonstration they give! In less than thirty minutes, Lazio is already leading 5-0, humiliating Siena Sport Club in front of his faithful, about a thousand people.
After the Lazio’s fifth goal, Siena players surrender and walk away, justifying their decision with their “clear inferiority”. The organisers cannot do anything but stop the demonstration. The players of one the quickest football match in history are: Ancherani, Daiber, Dos Santos, Saraceni, Marrajeni, Mariotti, Della Longa, Pellicciari, Pellegrini, Stefferint and Botaliga.
This story gives us an idea about how things are going for a very young Lazio, missionary of sport in the Italian Novecento.
Up to 1911, Lazio is the true dominator in the Centre-Southern Italian football. Lazio simply does not have rivals, and walks over its opponents. The success achieved by Lazio leads to the formation of new football teams in Rome: Alba, Fortitudo, Roman, Spes, Robur, Audace, Juventus, Esperia. Among the Roma’s football teams, the strongest rivalry remains between Lazio and Virtus, the two better organised teams.
In 1908, Virtus beats Lazio 1-0. A small “accident” in history, which is eventually fixed one year later: Lazio gives them back the favour, winning 4-2. In those years, Lazio clearly dominates football in Rome, winning several trophies such as Coppa Tosti, Coppa Viscogliosi-Baccelli, sometimes there were not even challengers willing to play Lazio!
21 April 1908. At 11,30 in the morning Lazio departs from Termini station, heading to Naples to meet the local team, which offered a silver trophy as prize for the winner. The match takes place in Fuorigrotta, and Lazio wins 3-1. Not surprisingly, Ancherani scores a wonder goal, realised by exploiting a push received from an opponent!
The gap between Centre-Southern football and Northern football in Italy is still huge. Indeed, the official championship takes place in the north of Italy, and northern teams look at the first international matches. Lazio feels mature enough and seeks to be involved in this great football.
In 1908, the dream becomes reality. Lazio organises a tournament with qualifying groups in Roma and Campania. Both Lazio, for the Roma group, and Naples, for the Campania group, reach the final. The Northern-Italian football champion Pro-Vercelli are invited, but they are too snob to accept and turn down the invite. Juventus (Torino) and Us Milanese, vice-Champion, attend instead. The result is a complete disaster for Lazio, and clearly shows the huge gap in Italian football.
The second possibility to face the more sophisticated northern football arrived in 1913, when the Italian Federation organised the first national tournament, based on two regional groups. This was the first attempt to reach the unification of two different football worlds, which had communicated very little until then, leaving the southern football to mediocre levels. Lazio completely dominated the Roman group, against Roman, Fortitudo and Juventus, to then defeat first the Livorno’s Virtus Juventusque in the inter-regional semi-final, and then Naples, qualifying for the national final. Lazio would have faced Pro Vercelli, the very team that, five years earlier, had declined the invite from Lazio to play a tournament in Rome, judging that football too poor. The match Lazio-Pro Vercelli, played at Genova expectedly ended with a heavy defeat for Lazio: 6-0, a result that confirmed the huge gap existing between the northern football and the central-southern one.
In the following season, Lazio, once again, dominated above all the Roman teams, defeating easily Roman, Juventus, Audace, Fortitudo and Pro Roma. During the Roman tournament, however, there were some incidents in the match against Juventus, the first signs of a football violence that would have characterised in the immediate post war the football in the Capital city. On her way to the national final, Lazio defeated first the Livorno’s Spes, with two victories (1-0 and 3-0) and then humiliated the Napoli’s International, defeated for 8-0 on their own ground! Once again, Lazio had reached the final, where the biancocelesti would have found Casale. The Piedmonts won the first leg with a pyrotechnic 7-1, helped by the fact that Lazio had had to field the cashier Perugini to replace Fiorani, who got stuck for work reasons at the very last minute; on the return leg at Rome, Lazio lost 2-0.
However, no matter how painful, the first step to move away from the isolation of the Roma’s football had been made. While Lazio starts to taste defeats from the northern teams, it becomes almost impossible to find a team in Rome willing to challenge them, with some exceptions. Lazio plays Robur five times, obtaining five victories (3-1, 5-4, 9-0, 2-0, 1-0). Same treatment reserved to Fortitudo in 1909 (which, later on will merge with Roman and Alba to form As Roma): 7-0, 4-1 and 7-3. The derbies were real fights, and the flaming atmosphere of the battle on the pitch, very often propagated to the stands too. Lazio was however a too much better team, as the tournament records showed.
In the middle of that season, Lazio moved to the new pitch of La Rondinella, a name what would have soon became a true symbol of the glorious biancoceleste history; the reason behind the decision to move was, however, related to an incident which involved the wife of Roma’s Prefetto, Annarone. He got furious when her wife, while was crossing Parco dei Daini with her chariot was hit by a ball. On the newly built stadium, Lazio will celebrate many of her legendary history pages.
The tournament, however, cannot be concluded due to the beginning of the First World War. For that war, Lazio Polisportiva, as well as many other Italian clubs, will pay a terrible price, with the death of many athletes, and the injury of many others, who did not hesitate to join the army to fight for their country. With the war, a époque of Lazio football finishes, and new actors were about to take over the club guided by Ballerini.

Research and translation by Conn - Laziofever.org
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