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 NonMollareMai (SNG) - My Experience LAZ-TOR '09

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NonMollareMai
Aquilotto
Aquilotto


Number of posts : 94
Age : 37
Country and city : singapore
Laziale since : 1992
Registration date : 2008-05-23

PostSubject: NonMollareMai (SNG) - My Experience LAZ-TOR '09   Thu Feb 26, 2009 6:16 pm

The cold wind pierced through my scarf like needles. My body shook uncontrollably and I was freezing my ass off in the stands. For a Singaporean who has never experienced winter, this was one hell of an experience.

In case you are wondering where exactly I was, I am referring to one of the best football stadiums that hosted a FIFA World Cup finals, Rome’s ‘Stadio Olimpico’. This majestic stadium is also home to the football team that I have supported since I was 11. ‘SS Lazio’.

Affectionately known as the ‘Biancoceleste’ (White and Blue in English), Lazio played Torino on week 24 in the Serie A championships and I was in Rome to witness this clash that I had spent six months planning.

Fresh air gushed into my lungs as I paced up the stairs and entered the stadium for the first time. The scene that greeted me was explosive! It is definitely more beautiful and impactful than what I see on television. Speechless, I suddenly felt so closely connected to the team that I have cheered and cried for all these years. Waves of emotions rushed over me, and words could hardly describe how I felt about being right there with my team then. Shedding tears of joy, I told myself, “It is worth it even if it means I am going to freeze to death”.

My childhood dream would not have been realised if not for the help of Paolo. Like me, he supports Lazio and is a native Roman. I met Paolo in the forum on www.laziofever.com, which is a website for English-speaking Lazio fans all over the world. I was worried that I could not get ticket for the match due to last minute changes on the fixture made by the Italian Federation, and Ermetico (Paolo’s nickname) answered to my SOS call on the forum. He helped me to get the ticket I needed and even drove me to the stadium for the match. It was also during the journey that I discovered that he is a stadium announcer for Lazio and offered to introduce me to the players after the game!

This was more than I had bargained for, as I was only expecting to catch the game live, and never in my wildest dreams would I have expected to get the chance to meet the players in person! It sure was a pleasant surprise and I was touched by his kind and humble gesture, especially since he has never even met me prior to this. The lengths that he would go to to help a fellow Lazio fan whom he met on the internet was just incredibly touching!

So there I stood, amongst the thousands of fellow Lazio fans. Whistles resonated from every part of the stadium. Before we knew it, Torino had taken the lead with their first shot of the game! We were in a state of disbelief. From some distance, I could see Paolo with his head sunk on the table, presumably in a state of disappointment.


A cross that was half-cleared by Ousmane Dabo fell to the feet of Ignazio Abate, who took two steps forward and unleashed a rocket from the D that slotted into the near bottom corner. We fought hard but former Lazio custodian, Matteo Sereni, denied Siviglia’s angle drive brilliantly. It was a poor performance and the team was jeered off the pitch at halftime

Stefano Mauri replaced Dabo, who was responsible for letting in the Torino goal, in the second half. Within 90 seconds of coming onto the pitch, Mauri had set up a chance for Lazio’s hit man Pandev, who fell as he tried to cut into the box, but the referee waved play on. To the dismay of all Lazio fans, no penalty was awarded for this. In an instant, insults aimed at the referee could be heard all around me. Especially outspoken was this old man who was seated just behind me, as he hollered, ‘Bastardo!’ ‘Va vancullo!’ He shouted.

And no, I think I had better not translate that.

In spite of the tension during the game, comic relief came when Kolarov, Lazio’s left back, rammed a powerful volley in the referee’s face! The referee tried to get up but dropped to the ground immediately. I had this scene captured live on my digital camera.

After waves and waves of attack, we managed to equalise through some bizarre circumstances. 1-1! Lazio Captain, Rocchi, flicked on a corner kick for Mauri's miscued overhead kick, but Siviglia headed the ball into the net from six yards at the near post. At that, I was up on my feet as I shouted myself hoarse! I could hear ‘Non Molllare Mai’ (Do not give up) being chanted from the ‘Curva Nord’ (North Stands) where the Ultras were seated. The atmosphere though, was still very tense as we were on a four-game losing streak and if we lost this game, we would be in trouble.

Just when everyone thought the game would continue, the scorer of the equaliser, Siviglia ran to where the Lazio Ultras were seated, and put his hands behind his ears, as though trying to tell the fans that he could not hear them. Apparently, this goal celebration angered the fans who have been standing all night long.

The match eventually ended at 1-1 and the commotion grew louder. I met up with Paolo who tried to bring me into the press conference room. However, there was no way we could get in as security personnel were present to stop any angry fans from attacking the president, Claudio Lotito. He is not a popular figure at the moment. Paolo explained that Siviglia was booed because he was taunting the Lazio Ultras and apparently, he had chosen the wrong time to perform such an antic. The postgame tension had thus caused me to lose my chance to meet the president and all the players!

Paolo, who is such an amazing man, told me to wait outside the gates where the players would come out. He made a final attempt to grab the players to take a picture with me. From there, I could see members of the Irriducibile (Lazio Hardcore group) standing outside waiting for Siviglia. Police were everywhere and this Singaporean was freezing his ass off while waiting patiently for a picture with any Lazio player.

Just as I was giving up hope, Paolo emerged with Muslera (Lazio’s goalkeeper) and we were introduced. He is really friendly and we shook hands and had a photo taken. I was over the moon!

I later got to meet two other players, Matuzalem and the Swiss international defender, Stephan Lichtsteiner, who spoke English and even wished me ‘Good evening’. In addition, I was really struck by their humble and sincere attitude. Meeting three Lazio players in person and taking pictures with them is an experience in my life that I will never ever forget.

We went for supper with a group of Paolo’s friends after that. Win or lose, these people will meet up for a get-together after every home match. I was introduced to several Lazio’s Radio Deejays as Gan, the ‘Fan from Singapore’. I do not know if they might find it weird as to why someone from the other side of the planet would support Lazio as fervently as I so, but for me, I enjoyed every second of this ‘get together’. I truly admire and applaud the camaraderie and love they possess for the club, this club that I will always have my heart until I die, ‘SS Lazio.’


Nigel.
Forza Lazio


The boys warming up


Kolarov lining up for the freekick


The Curva Nord.


Paolo in the VIP stands.



Me with Stephan Lichtsteiner



Me with Matuzalem.



Paolo and Friends @ the gathering.



Paolo and a beautiful lady Laziale.



The 'Laziale' gathering.












Last edited by NonMollareMai on Sat Feb 28, 2009 11:03 am; edited 2 times in total
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Ermetico
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Number of posts : 2227
Age : 55
Country and city : Italia, Roma
Laziale since : 1973
Registration date : 2008-05-02

PostSubject: Re: NonMollareMai (SNG) - My Experience LAZ-TOR '09   Thu Feb 26, 2009 8:27 pm

Hi Gan!

This "report" is absolutely amazing !
You write what you really pass by..Lazialita'!
This make me happy and proud when i can help people like you , and there are many , far away from my city.
You really talk too much about me and i consider that as a huge thank but believe me that i am already satysfied when i see my friends happy to be here .
Waiting for your pics .

Bravo!! Ps Vancullo? !! hehehehehehehehehehe

_________________
Don't ask what SS lazio can do for you.
but what YOU can do for la SS Lazio!
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BigMamaEagle
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PostSubject: Re: NonMollareMai (SNG) - My Experience LAZ-TOR '09   Thu Feb 26, 2009 9:51 pm

Great report. I'm happy you had a good time.
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Belgio
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Number of posts : 785
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PostSubject: Re: NonMollareMai (SNG) - My Experience LAZ-TOR '09   Sat Feb 28, 2009 4:09 am

Very nice! I'm happy for you!
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Ermetico
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PostSubject: Re: NonMollareMai (SNG) - My Experience LAZ-TOR '09   Sat Feb 28, 2009 12:29 pm

A real Fan report!
Bravo!

_________________
Don't ask what SS lazio can do for you.
but what YOU can do for la SS Lazio!
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Jofo
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PostSubject: Re: NonMollareMai (SNG) - My Experience LAZ-TOR '09   Sat Feb 28, 2009 1:04 pm

Wow the best report ever. I'm so happy for you. I guess that cold weather really paid off.
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Darran
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Number of posts : 80
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PostSubject: Re: NonMollareMai (SNG) - My Experience LAZ-TOR '09   Sat Feb 28, 2009 7:38 pm

It is really nice to share your experience. Us Laziali Singaporeans are far and few in our country that our voices can't be heard. I hope the players know that there are fans supporting them from as far as South East Asia. I hope we can bring this support for the club to the local media and gain some exposure. In the meantime, I am eagerly waiting for an opportunity to travel to Rome.
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Gæst
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PostSubject: Re: NonMollareMai (SNG) - My Experience LAZ-TOR '09   Sat Feb 28, 2009 9:39 pm

Yeah!
It's really cool to read about peoples trips to Rome and Lazio..
And Paolo youre simply amazing for all the help you do..
And fantastic with the videos.. Im off to Rome, very soon!

Forza Lazio!
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frederick
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Number of posts : 410
Age : 36
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PostSubject: Re: NonMollareMai (SNG) - My Experience LAZ-TOR '09   Sun Mar 01, 2009 4:16 pm

Man, I'm glad you made it to Rome finally..

My dream came true when I got to Rome for the very first time... The City, Olimpico, Lazio, Laziofever's member, then 3-0 Derby, undescribeable feelings bounce
And as for Paolo, he is really something, isn't he? It's always nice to know someone there to help you..

Forza Lazio!!!
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NonMollareMai
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Number of posts : 94
Age : 37
Country and city : singapore
Laziale since : 1992
Registration date : 2008-05-23

PostSubject: Thanks guys!   Mon Mar 02, 2009 5:24 am

Thank you all for your kind words! Really appreciate it! I really dont know when i can come back to Rome again. Hope you guys enjoy the derby meeting!


Forza Lazio,
Nigel
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forzalazio
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PostSubject: Re: NonMollareMai (SNG) - My Experience LAZ-TOR '09   Mon Mar 02, 2009 3:31 pm

Why do they boh Siviglia on the last video???
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El Weninho
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PostSubject: Re: NonMollareMai (SNG) - My Experience LAZ-TOR '09   Tue Mar 03, 2009 4:15 am

Very nice story, Nigel! A pleasure to reed!

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NonMollareMai
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Number of posts : 94
Age : 37
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PostSubject: Siviglia   Tue Mar 03, 2009 6:29 am

forzalazio wrote:
Why do they boh Siviglia on the last video???

Paolo explained that Siviglia was booed because he was taunting the Lazio Ultras and apparently, he had chosen the wrong time to perform such an antic.
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NonMollareMai
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Number of posts : 94
Age : 37
Country and city : singapore
Laziale since : 1992
Registration date : 2008-05-23

PostSubject: Lazio in the news!!! Wooo...   Tue Mar 03, 2009 6:48 am

The above report that i wrote was published in my country's national papers this morning! Byfar, I think im the only Singaporean Laziali to have written about Lazio. Throughout the years, it has always been 'Man United', 'Chelsea', and this English team, and that English team. Im so sick of it!

Nevertheless, im proud that SS Lazio are gaining recognition and exposure in this EPL infested little island that i lived in. I will continue to do my part for the club and the forum.

P/S: They removed all the vulgarities! Hahaha.


Forza Lazio,
Gan


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Caxi
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PostSubject: Re: NonMollareMai (SNG) - My Experience LAZ-TOR '09   Tue Mar 03, 2009 7:59 am

This is brilliant! all round.
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Gæst
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PostSubject: Re: NonMollareMai (SNG) - My Experience LAZ-TOR '09   Tue Mar 03, 2009 2:40 pm

Crazy! Did the newspaper not have any other impordant things to write about? Joke! cheers

Very awesome, and hope it will proove the number of laziales ind singapore.. In Denmark were lucky to have our own website, wich brings news, and also has a forum, etc.
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