Cobolli Gigli: ‘Inter in Calciopoli too’

Former Juventus President Giovanni Cobolli Gigli said Inter “deserved to be punished” for the Calciopoli scandal and discussed their resurgence.

Ahead of a trip to the Stadio Olimpico on Sunday evening, Cobolli Gigli spoke to the Roma Match Program for the game.

“We were demoted to play the 2006-07 season in Serie B and accepted the ruling. The regret remains for a sporting trial that was, in my view, not conducted in the best way.

“Certain pieces of evidence were ignored, actually it’s more accurate to say hidden, and the existence of other telephone wiretaps regarding different clubs was not made known at the time.

“Inter too deserved to be punished for what emerged in the various conversations. The FIGC Prosecutor Palazzi said so. It all emerged when the matter missed the statute of limitations and it ended like that.”

As part of the Calciopoli scandal, Juventus saw the 2004-05 title revoked and the 2005-06 edition was awarded to Inter, who had finished third that season.

This is because Milan, who came in second, were also punished with docked points in the original trial.

It later emerged that Inter had also engaged in similar conversations lobbying the refereeing designator, but these were not included as part of the evidence.

Juve were the only club to be demoted to Serie B and given a huge points penalty to begin that season, but some of their stars remained even though they had just won the World Cup for Italy.

“Without doubt it was very tough, especially at the start. We drew the opening game against Rimini and had to realise this tournament was to be faced with a different level of determination. Players like Gigi Buffon, Giorgio Chiellini, Mauro Camoranesi, Pavel Nedved, Alessandro Del Piero and David Trezeguet got to work with great humility, we won the league title with several rounds to spare, despite the points penalty.

“I’d also say that year in purgatory contributed to growing the popularity of Juventus in Italy. Many cities welcomed us the way we never usually experienced in Serie A. They were happy to have Juventus in their stadiums and to watch these champions.

“The only time something strange happened was at Arezzo. It was the match that gave us mathematical certainty of promotion. We won 5-1, with Del Piero and Chiellini braces, then Trezeguet added the fifth goal.

“At the end of the game their Coach, Antonio Conte, stormed over to the locker room and complained. He was furious. He’d have preferred a different result for his Arezzo, who were struggling and indeed were relegated at the end of that season.”

Juventus went back into the top flight and took a few years to really hit their stride again.

“Didier Deschamps received some bad advice from his agent, who wanted an exaggerated contract. We brought in Claudio Ranieri, who twice took us on to the Serie A podium, got us back in the Champions League and gave us a legendary night winning away to Real Madrid.”

Juventus started their seven-year winning streak once the new stadium was opened, so Roma are hoping to follow suit.

“It’s fundamental to create business, revenue, but above all to create a sense of belonging within the fans. A stadium that has in it a store, a museum, a hospitality area and stands that are built for football fans is the only solution to become a more international club.

“Juventus are already at the top, but Roma are getting there.”

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