Rotten core of Italian football punished

A few days ago, I wrote about Marcello Lippi resigning as coach of Gli Azzuri. Lippi felt that the massive match-fixing scandal that is rocking top-level Italian football currently had rubbed off on him and his son, Daniele. There's no hiding that this is a major scandal, one that will taint Italian football for years to come.

The verdicts are now in, with punishments meted out to teams and individuals.

Serie A champions Juventus cops a biggie: the team is stripped of its 2005 and 2006 titles, are out of the 2006 and 2007 Champions League, and get a thirty-point deduction for the next season - during which Juventus will be relegated to Serie B. Good luck to them advancing from there... it'll take a while.

Former Juventus general manager Luciano Moggi and CEO Antonio Giraudo both get five year bans; Moggi was also fined 50,000 Euro and Giraudo, 20,000. Both could end up being banned for life. It was wiretaps on Moggi's phone conversations that sparked the present investigation in the first place.

AC Milan got off lighter: the team is allowed to remain in Serie A, but loses 15 points for the next season. It can't take part in the 2006/07 Champions League however, and Vice President Adriano Galliani gets a one-year ban, and official Leonardo Meani, three and a half years. No fines for either though.

Both Lazio and Fiorentina are booted into Serie B, with the former receiving a seven point deduction and the latter a 12-point one. Lazio is out of the 06/07 UEFA Cup, and club president Claudio Lotito cops a 10,000 Euro fine plus a three-and-a-half year ban from football.

Fiorentina's president Andrea della Valle is also banned for three-and-a-half years, and fined 20,000 Euro; Diego della Valle, honorary president of Fiorentina, is banned for four years and fined 30,000 Euro.

The following were also banned from football for different lengths of time:

Franco Carraro, Italian Football Federation President: four-and-half years.
Innocenzo Mazzini, Italian Football Federation VicePresident: five years.
Tullio Lanese, Italian Referee Association President: two-and-a-half years
Pierluigi Pairetto, Italian Football Federation official: two-and-a-half years.
Gennaro Mazzei, Italian Football Federation official: one year.
Massimo De Santis, referee: four-and-half years.
Paolo Dondarini, referee: three-and-a-half years
Fabrizio Babini, linesman: one year.
Gianluca Paparesta, referee: three months.
Claudio Puglisi, referee: one year.
Referee Pietro Ingargiola was given a warning.

Further investigations into illegal betting by players underway by the Italian police, and more people could get indicted.

The Guardian thinks one effect of the top teams getting relegated is that their talented players will seek transfers to foreign clubs. Maybe so, but the European clubs are likely to be vary of Italians tainted by the scandal and will be careful with whom they sign up.

It's not the only corruption scandal to hit football. Other countries like Germany, Brazil and the UK have had their match-fixing scandals, but the size of the Italian one is massive. It's hard to see how Italian football will be able to recover its reputation in fact.

Other related posts:
Outrageously camp football referee caught on camera
Zidane? Try North Korean women footballers instead...
Bans and fines for Zidane and Materazzi

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