Alessandro Del Piero
Del Piero with Sydney FC in 2013.
|Full name||Alessandro Del Piero|
|Date of birth||9 November 1974|
|Place of birth||Conegliano, Italy|
|Height||1.73 m (5 ft 8 in)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 18 April 2014.
† Appearances (Goals).
Alessandro Del Piero (Italian pronunciation: [alesˈsandro del ˈpjɛːro]) Ufficiale OMRI (born 9 November 1974) is an Italian footballer who currently plays for Delhi Dynamos FC in Indian Super League. He is second place in the ranking of Italian all-time top scorers (345 goals, and behind only Silvio Piola, 390 goals). He played in Juventus F.C. for 19 years (11 years as captain), and holds the club records for goals (290) and appearances (705).
Del Piero scored in all competitions in which he participated. He was named in the FIFA 100, a list of the 125 greatest living footballers selected by Pelé as a part of FIFA's centenary celebrations. He was also voted in the list of best European players for the past 50 years in the UEFA Golden Jubilee Poll. In 2000, Del Piero was the world's best-paid football player from salary, bonuses, and advertising revenue. As of December 2012, he is in tenth place among the UEFA Champions League all-time goalscorers. Along with six awards in Italy for gentlemanly conduct, he has also won the Golden Foot award, which pertains to personality and playing ability.
He played three FIFA World Cup and four UEFA European Football Championship with the Italian national team. He is joint 4th (with Roberto Baggio) in the Italian national team top-scorer ranking, with 27 goals (behind Silvio Piola with 30 goals, Giuseppe Meazza with 33 goals, and Luigi Riva with 35 goals) in 91 appearances.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Club career
- 3 International career
- 4 Style of play
- 5 Outside football
- 6 Career statistics
- 7 Honours
- 8 Notes
- 9 References
- 10 Bibliography
- 11 External links
Born in Conegliano, Veneto, Del Piero is the son of Gino, an electrician, and Bruna, a housekeeper. He regularly played football in the backyard with two friends, Nelso and Pierpaolo, as a child. All three dreamed of becoming footballers, but only Del Piero would eventually manage to do so. Alessandro's older brother, Stefano, briefly played professional football for Sampdoria before an injury curtailed his career. The family lived in the hamlet of Saccon, a rural home in San Vendemiano. While growing up, Del Piero's family did not have much money for travelling abroad, so he considered being a lorry driver in order to see the world.
While playing for the local youth team of San Vendemiano, Del Piero used to feature as a goalkeeper because he could play a lot more football that way. His mother thought it would be better for him if he played as a goalkeeper since he would not sweat and the possibility of him getting injured was less likely. His brother Stefano commented to their mother that Alessandro looked better playing in an attacking position and Del Piero switched.
Del Piero began his rise in 1981 in the ranks of San Vendemiano. In 1988, Del Piero was first spotted by scouts and he left home at the young age of 13 to play with the youth side of Padova. At the age of 16, he made his debut in Serie B and on 22 November 1992, he scored his first professional goal in the 5–0 thrashing of Ternana. In 1993, thanks to Giampiero Boniperti, Del Piero was bought by Juventus for five billion lire, with an overlap of 150 million lire per season.
In 1993, Del Piero transferred to Juventus F.C. and played for the Turin giants for 19 seasons until being released in the summer of 2012. Del Piero made his Serie A debut against Foggia in September 1993 and scored his first goal in his next game against Reggiana after appearing as a substitute. On his full debut for Juventus, he netted a hat-trick against Parma. Juventus claimed their first Scudetto in eight years in his second season and success continued to follow. With the Turin club, he went on to win the Serie A championship eight times, though his 2005 and 2006 Scudetti were revoked due to calciopoli, the Champions League, the Coppa Italia, and the Intercontinental Cup. His goal in the 1997 UEFA Champions League Final, however, was unable to prevent Juventus from going down 3–1 to Borussia Dortmund.
The following campaign of 1997–98 was his best season, as he scored 21 goals in Serie A and finished top scorer in the Champions League with 10 goals, one of which included a freekick and a hat-trick against AS Monaco in the semi-finals. Again Juventus lost in the final, falling 1–0 to Real Madrid from a strike by Predrag Mijatović on 20 May. Domestic success, however, was achieved that season, as Juventus celebrated its 25th Serie A title.
In November 1998, Del Piero picked up a serious knee injury in the 2–2 draw with Udinese. This kept him out of action for the remainder of the season and the club struggled without him, limping home to a lowly sixth place finish in the league. During this time, Del Piero earned the nickname "Il Pinturicchio," in reference to a comment by former president Gianni Agnelli when he compared the emerging Del Piero to the renaissance artist Pinturicchio. He's also been nicknamed by the fans as "Il Fenomeno Vero" meaning "The Real Phenomenon," in a sort of comparison with Ronaldo, who was nicknamed "Il Fenomeno" by rival supporters of Internazionale.
Lippi second era
Del Piero formed a formidable partnership with French striker David Trezeguet, who joined in 2000, and Czech playmaker Pavel Nedvěd in 2001, as Juventus was crowned Serie A champions for a 26th time in May 2002. This success meant that Juventus automatically qualified for the next year's Champions League. Juventus were pooled in Group E alongside Newcastle United, Dynamo Kyiv, and former champions Feyenoord. Del Piero opened up his account in European competition that season when he scored his side's second goal after lovely build up play by Nedvěd and Mauro Camoranesi set him free in their 5–0 defeat of Dynamo Kyiv on 24 September.
On the next matchday, Juventus played hosted to Newcastle on 1 October and Del Piero hit a brace to help the Old Lady maintain top spot in their group. Juventus progressed to the second group stage where the club managed to progress along with Manchester United on goal differential over FC Basel and Deportivo de La Coruña. Juventus then saw off FC Barcelona in the quarter-finals through an extra time goal by Marcelo Zalayeta, and faced Spanish opposition again in the likes of Real Madrid in the semi-finals. The triumvirate attacking partnership proved wonders for Juventus, as the team overturned a 2–1 first leg deficit to record a 4–3 aggregate win as all three attacking stars netted in the second leg. Juventus faced Italian rivals Milan in the Final in Manchester on 28 May 2003. After a goalless 120 minutes, the tie went to a penalty shoot-out, where Del Piero finished his spot-kick but it wasn't enough, as Juventus fell 3–2 in the shoot-out.
After UEFA Euro 2004 in Portugal, Juve manager Marcello Lippi was replaced by Fabio Capello. Capello was not convinced of Del Piero's abilities and frequently benched him in favour of new signing Zlatan Ibrahimović, much to the disappointment of many fans. But Del Piero still managed to score 14 goals as Juventus won their 28th league title, thanks to his overhead assist to teammate David Trezeguet, which proved decisive in a match against Milan at the San Siro.
Journalists and coaches agreed that Del Piero was back to his best in the 2005–06 season, having scored 20 goals in all competitions. His role at Juventus, however, changed in the following season, as coach Fabio Capello preferred to use him as a substitute for an "immediate impact," as Capello put it. Del Piero never had a calm relation with Fabio Capello.
In 2006, Del Piero equalled José Altafini's Serie A record of six goals as a substitute after scoring in the final minute of Juventus' final game of the 2005–06 season. On 10 January 2006, Del Piero became the all time leading goalscorer for Juventus when he scored three times in a Coppa Italia match against Fiorentina and took his total goals for the club to 185. The previous record holder was Giampiero Boniperti, who scored 182 goals for the club. Del Piero scored the last goal for Juventus in the 2005–06 season before Juve were forcibly relegated due to the infamous Calciopoli scandal.
After Juventus were demoted to Serie B and their last two Scudetti were revoked, Del Piero pledged that he would stay to captain the team in Serie B. He underlined that players should stick with the team, explaining that "The Agnelli family deserve this, as do the fans and the new directors." While many key players such as Fabio Cannavaro, Emerson, Gianluca Zambrotta, Patrick Vieira, Zlatan Ibrahimović, and Lilian Thuram left Turin, Del Piero chose to stay and help the club with Pavel Nedved, David Trezequet, Mauro Cammoranesi, Buffon gain promotion.
Del Piero's first appearance after the 2006 FIFA World Cup triumph was in a Coppa Italia match against Cesena on 23 August 2006. Since Juventus played in the Serie B for the 2006–07 season, the Coppa Italia campaign became increasingly important for the club in order to achieve a UEFA Cup spot. Having been on vacation beforehand, Del Piero started on the bench. Juventus and Cesena were locked on 1–1 when Del Piero entered in the 74th minute and after nine seconds, he scored the winning goal for Juventus.
Del Piero then came in as a substitute at the 61st minute for Juve's next Coppa Italia match on 27 August against Napoli. Again Juventus were behind, but Del Piero scored twice to give Juve the lead. In the end, the match went to penalties. Del Piero scored but Napoli eventually won 5–4 in the penalty shoot-out. Although Juventus started off with a nine-point penalty from the match-fixing scandal, the Old Lady gained promotion to Serie A as league champions. Del Piero finished the league campaign with 20 goals as he finished as the top scorer of the Serie B.
Return to Serie A
Following this, Del Piero was locked in months of fractious negotiations over the signing of a new contract with Juventus' new management. After successfully negotiating a new contract till 30 June 2010, he was greeted with news of the birth of his first child, Tobias Del Piero. This was quite a staggering turnaround in his fortunes, as only two weeks earlier, he was dropped by Claudio Ranieri for the Serie A match with Fiorentina and was then axed from Roberto Donadoni's Italy squad for the games with Georgia and South Africa.
In February 2008, he scored the winning goal for Juventus in a Serie A victory at home to Roma, which finished 1–0. He scored two goals away at Lazio and was named to two consecutive Serie A teams of the week. On 6 April 2008, he set a new appearance record for Juventus, overtaking Gaetano Scirea's previous tally of 552 matches in all competitions. In April, he registered seven goals in five Serie A matches, including a hat-trick in a 0–4 away win over Atalanta.
On the final weekend of the 2007–08 season, Del Piero scored a brace against Sampdoria in a 3–3 draw. These two goals were crucial, as it took him to 21 goals for the season, thus winning him the Capocannonieri prize in Serie A for the first time in his illustrious career, beating the likes of David Trezeguet (20 goals) and Marco Borriello (19 goals) and matching his highest tally for a top-flight season since 1997–98. He became only the second Italian ever to win consecutive Capocannoniere titles in two different leagues – former Juventus and 1982 World Cup hero Paolo Rossi being the other. (Coincidentally, Rossi also won the Capocannoniere titles like Del Piero – first in Serie B and then in Serie A). On 26 July, Del Piero was awarded the Scirea Award.
Before the season, Juventus manager Claudio Ranieri remarked that Del Piero would have as good a season, or an even better one, than the previous term. In August 2008, Del Piero announced that he would try to keep playing professional football with Juventus until he is 40 years old. With Juventus back in the Champions League, they were drawn into the same group as nine-time winners Real Madrid and UEFA Cup winners Zenit Saint Petersburg. Del Piero marked Juve's return with a brilliant match-winning free kick to seal a home win against Zenit. On 21 October, he scored a wonderful first-time strike from distance as Juve defeated Real Madrid 2–1 at home in Turin. In the fifth minute, from open play, Del Piero swerved the ball into the far corner of the goal with a freekick-like shot, giving Madrid goalkeeper Iker Casillas no chance.
On 5 November 2008, Juventus and Real Madrid squared off at Santiago Bernabéu in the Champions League. The Italians won 0–2, their first away win against Madrid since 1962, and Del Piero was a key performer, scoring both the goals and being praised by both Claudio Ranieri and Madrid coach Bernd Schuster. As he left the pitch after being substituted, "fans from both sides gave him a standing ovation." Juventus' 2009 Champions League campaign ended in disappointment, however, as they were eliminated by Chelsea in the second round. Despite converting a penalty in the second leg in Turin, Del Piero was unable to prevent Juventus from losing 3–2 on aggregate.
In the league, Juventus were mostly challenging Milan for second place and an automatic Champions League place. Most notably, Del Piero inspired Juventus to a 3–0 win over Siena in their penultimate game of the season, scoring a brace and setting up Claudio Marchisio for the youngster's third goal of the season to end their run of seven winless matches in Serie A. Juventus then went on to defeat Lazio 2–0 and pip Milan to second place, determined by their head-to-head record.
On 17 July 2009, Del Piero extended his contract with Juventus by one more year until 30 June 2011 in Pinzolo while training for pre-season, thus practically ensuring that he would retire at the club with which he started his professional career. During his renewal, he said, "I am happy at Juventus and we are competitive. I want to keep playing for as long as I can and I'm certain that for at least two more years I will be at the top level." He marked his 445th Serie A appearance, breaking the all-time club record, with a brace against Genoa on 14 February 2010. He is also currently the all-time top scorer for Juventus, having scored more than 250 goals in all competitions. He has also made over 600 appearances in official matches for the club, breaking the record of Gaetano Scirea, who had 552 appearances for Juventus.
On 14 March 2010, Del Piero recorded his 300th and 301st career goal during a 3–3 draw with Siena with the first two goals at the second and seventh minute. On 30 October 2010, he recorded his 179th Serie A goal, helping his side to a 2–1 win at Milan, breaking the record of club legend Giampiero Boniperti as Juventus' top scorer in Serie A and further cementing his status as the most prolific goalscorer in Juventus history.
On 5 February 2011, with his substitution against Cagliari, Alessandro Del Piero became the most capped Juventus player, edging out former Juventus legend Giampiero Boniperti. Del Piero remains the third most capped player in the Serie A, behind Javier Zanetti and Francesco Totti, respectively. On 5 May 2011, he signed a new one-year contract to stay at the Juventus Arena. His previous deal was due to expire on 30 June 2011.
On 24 May 2011, Del Piero and Juventus played against Manchester United at Old Trafford in a friendly match being former England defender Gary Neville's testimonial match. Del Piero was substituted after 65 minutes to a standing ovation from the United supporters. Juventus confirmed on 18 October 2011 that the 2011–12 season would be Del Piero's last with the club. The 2011–12 season under new manager Antonio Conte, his former teammate at Juve, saw Del Piero being used sparingly because of the summer arrival of forward Mirko Vučinić from Roma. He scored his first goal in the new Juventus Stadium on 24 January 2012 in the 3–0 win over Roma in the quarter-finals of the Coppa Italia. Later in the season, Del Piero stated that he was surprised at Juventus president Andrea Agnelli's announcement regarding the club's decision to not offer the striker a new contract.
In the second leg of Juventus's clash with Milan in the Coppa Italia semi-finals, Del Piero finished off a brilliant move by Juventus as they secured a 2–2 draw on the night and progressed to the final with a 4–3 aggregate win. On 25 March, Del Piero helped Juventus defeat Internazionale by scoring the second goal in a 2–0 victory, his first goal of the Serie A season. In Juventus' match against Lazio on 11 April, Del Piero replaced Mirko Vučinić in the second half, making his 700th appearance for the Old Lady, and then went on to score a fantastic free kick to earn his side a 2–1 victory and return the Old Lady to the top of the Serie A table.
On 13 May, Del Piero started Juventus's final league game of the season against Atalanta, marking the occasion by scoring a goal. Twenty-seven minutes into the match, del Piero picked the ball up on the edge of the penalty box and placed a shot past Giorgio Frezzolini to make the score 2–0 and help Juventus clinch an undefeated Serie A season. He would be substituted off after 59 minutes to an emotional response from both sets of players and supporters. This would be Alessandro Del Piero's final Serie A appearance for Juventus.
Del Piero's final match for the Bianconeri was in the Coppa Italia Final on 20 May against Napoli. Del Piero was subbed off in the 67th minute for Mirko Vučinić as his Juventus career came to an end. He received a standing ovation from both the Juventus and Napoli fans. Following the game, he confirmed that after his 19-year spell with Juventus, he did not plan to retire. He then left the club and became a free agent.
He refused the board's offer to retire the number 10 shirt in his honour, saying that "I've really had so much that I would never want it to be retired, this way, every child can dream of day of wearing it." On 30 June, Del Piero wrote an open letter to the Juventus fans thanking them for almost two decades of support, stating, "Above all what remains is the fans, you who are Juventus. That jersey that I loved and will always love, that I desired and respected ... From tomorrow I will no longer be a Juventus player, but I will always be one of you. Now a new adventure begins and I am as fired up as I was 19 summers ago."
On 5 September 2012, Alessandro Del Piero signed a two-year deal with Sydney FC. He was paid approximately AU$3.5 million for each of his first two seasons, and therefore became the highest-paid footballer to ever play in Australia. Del Piero had been linked to Liverpool prior to signing for Sydney, but later revealed due to his memories of Heysel he would not have been able to move to the club.
Upon signing for Sydney FC, Del Piero said, "It's a special day for me. I am happy to announce that I just signed for two years for Sydney FC. This is a very big moment for me because I want to continue my career in a new part of the world where I can make a major contribution and help grow the game I love." After the announcement of the transfer to Sydney FC, Juventus wished good luck to their former captain. Francesco Totti and Filippo Inzaghi said they were saddened by his departure.
Sydney FC chairman Scott Barlow said, "The signing of Alessandro Del Piero is a big moment for this club and, we believe, a historic moment for football in Australia, I wouldn't like to go into the details of the contract,but this does represent the largest professional sporting contract in Australian history and the numbers that have been discussed aren't too far off the mark."
FFA chief executive Ben Buckley said that this signing will be crucial for the growth of Australian Football, both economically and technically. Ian Crook, manager of Sydney FC, said he would build the forward set-up around the Italian, who would be given "licence" to pull the strings. "We're not going to reinvent the wheel here. He's played 19 years for one of the biggest four or five clubs in the world, as a No. 10 or a No. 9. We're not going to change that." FIFA President Sepp Blatter sent his best wishes to Del Piero and his new club.
On 6 October, Del Piero made his debut against Wellington Phoenix. Del Piero scored his first goal on 13 October against Newcastle Jets in his first home game for Sydney with a fantastic free-kick. The match against Newcastle featured hero-cam, which allowed the viewer to track Del Piero's movements with one camera throughout the game. On 20 October, Del Piero scored the winning goal against Western Sydney Wanderers FC (1–0), making history with the first goal in the first Sydney Derby. On 28 October, against Perth Glory (2–1), he scored his third goal from a penalty kick. On 16 November, he scored two goals against Brisbane Roar.
On 13 January, he made the assist for the winning goal against Melbourne Heart (2–1). On 19 January, he scored four goals and made one assist in Sydney's 7–1 win against Wellington Phoenix. This was the first time he scored more than three goals in one game and after being substituted, the fans gave him a standing ovation. On 2 February, Del Piero scored his 10th goal in A-League against Newcastle Jets (2–2). On 10 February, became the scorer of the most goals in a season for the Sky Blues, scoring one goal against Brisbane Roar (2–1). On 21 February, Del Piero renewed his contract until 2014. On 2 March, he scored his 12th goal with a stunning 25-yard thunderbolt. On 23 March, Del Piero scored the goal in a 1–1 draw against Western Sydney Wanderers, in the Sydney Derby. On 28 March, he scored a penalty kick against Brisbane Roar (1–3).
Del Piero was named captain for Sydney in their 2013–14 season. On 11 October 2013, Del Piero scored the opening goal of the 2013–14 A-League season, the game-winner in a 2–0 victory over Newcastle Jets. Alessandro went on to score 10 more goals for Sydney FC in the following season, before being released of his contract at Sydney FC. Alessandro had been rumored to play in the Thai Premier League for PTT Rayong & in the Chinese Super League with Marcelo Lippi's Guangzhou Evergrande. His final competitive match was against the Melbourne Victory who had coincidentally just defeated the Asian champions Guangzhou Evergrande in the AFC Champions League. His farewell was at Etihad Stadium losing in an Elimination final due to Gui Finkler's injury time winner in a 2-1 loss.
On Sunday 10 August 2014, Del Piero captained the Hyundai A-League All Stars against his club of almost 20 years, Juventus, in Sydney, in front of over 55,000 people at ANZ Stadium. Del Piero was substituted off at the 63rd minute of the match for David Williams, to a standing ovation.
Delhi Dynamos FC
In 23 August 2014, it was reported that Delhi Dynamos FC who will play in the inaugural 2014 ISL was in talks with Del Piero. His brother, Stefano Del Piero said “During the last (few) weeks, we have received inquiries from several teams, not only from India but also from other countries. There is a lot of interest in Alessandro." On 28 August 2014, he officially signed for the Indian franchise, signing a four month deal.
Del Piero is currently Italy's joint fourth all-time leading scorer. His tournament debut was UEFA Euro 1996, making his only appearance in the first half of a match against Russia before being substituted at half-time.
Del Piero competed with fan favourite Roberto Baggio for a spot in the starting 11 during the World Cup, while struggling to recover from injury suffered during the 1998 Champions League final with Juventus. He made his first World Cup appearance in the second match of the group stage, a 3–0 defeat of Cameroon. In the final group game against Austria, Del Piero won his first start as Italy won 2–1 to seal a passage into the next round, avoiding reigning champions Brazil. Italy reached the quarter-finals after defeating Norway 1–0, falling to hosts and eventual champions France in penalty kicks.
He was part of Italy's squad that made it to the final of the European Championships in 2000. In the final group game, Del Piero scored the winning goal against Sweden eliminating their opposition. In the final itself, he missed two gilt-edged chances in Italy's 2–1 loss to France in extra time.
He returned to the international scene in the 2002 World Cup after a season in Serie A in which Juventus won the Scudetto. Del Piero scored the decisive goal against Hungary, which sealed the Azzurri's qualification for the finals. He instantly scored with a header against Mexico after coming on as a substitute, a goal which saved Italy from the ignominy of a first round exit. The goal sent Italy through to the second round, where they were eliminated by a golden goal in a controversial match against South Korea.
Del Piero began the 2006 World Cup, appearing in two out of three group stage matches, and made his first start of the competition in a 1–0 round of 16 win over Australia on 26 June. On 4 July, Del Piero entered as a substitute near the end of regulation and scored Italy's second goal in a 2–0 semi-final win over host Germany. In the final against France, which ended 1–1 after extra time, Del Piero scored a penalty in the shootout as Italy won the tournament for the fourth time. He admitted afterwards that winning the World Cup was his childhood dream.
As of 2008, Del Piero has captained Italy seven times (including during UEFA Euro 2008). He also regularly wore the No. 10 shirt, but later gave it to Francesco Totti and switched to No. 7, as it was the first number he wore at the start of his career. Even though the No. 10 shirt was vacated after Totti retired from the national team in July 2007, Del Piero denied any interest in taking back the number, saying he was satisfied with No. 7. In May, he was recalled by popular demand to Italy's UEFA Euro 2008 squad after a nine-month absence from international duty, and thus became the second Italian player, after Paolo Maldini, to participate in seven major international tournaments (Euro 1996, 2000, 2004, 2008; World Cup 1998, 2002, 2006).
Del Piero was called up to Italy's squad for the Euro 2008 championship in Austria and Switzerland. He was mostly on the substitutes' bench but started against Romania as the squad's captain. In the group match against the Dutch, he came on for the under-performing Antonio Di Natale and made an immediate impact, including several efforts on goal. He could not prevent the Azzurri, however, from a 3–0 loss. Italy qualified through the group stage in second-place behind the Netherlands, eliminating Romania and France. In the quarter-final against Spain, Del Piero made a substitute appearance during extra-time, and with the game ending in a 0–0 draw, it was decided by a penalty shootout in which Spain won 4–2. On 20 August 2008, he won his 90th cap for Italy in friendly against Austria, only the fifth Azzurri player to reach this landmark. Despite announcing that he will carry on playing until he is 40 years old, he has not been called up since Italy's qualifier against Georgia on 10 September 2008.
In 2013, Italy national coach Cesare Prandelli stated that he would consider calling Del Piero up for the 2014 World Cup.
Style of play
Del Piero usually plays as a supporting-striker and occasionally between the midfield and the strikers, known in Italy as the trequartista position, due to his vision, passing, ball control, dribbling ability (in particular in one on one situations) and creativity. Del Piero's playing style is regarded by critics as creative in attacking, assisting many goals as well as scoring himself, as opposed to just "goal poaching".
Under Marcello Lippi's reign as Juventus coach, Del Piero played in the "trident-attack" formation along with veterans Gianluca Vialli and Fabrizio Ravanelli. After that, he took a role in a combination with Zinedine Zidane behind Filippo Inzaghi. As Juventus playing style changed in Lippi's second stint with Juventus starting in 2001, Del Piero partnered with Zidane's replacement, Pavel Nedvěd, in front of the midfield, or on the left flank, with David Trezeguet upfront. He has also been employed occasionally as a winger for Italy while playing under Arrigo Sacchi.
Del Piero is a free kick and penalty kick (62 goals with penalties) specialist: he's the Italian free kicks all-time top scorer (49 goals: 43 goals in clubs, 6 goals in Italy national team).
After scoring a goal, Del Piero often celebrates by running to the touchline in front of the Juventus fans and sticking his tongue out; he has also performed a back-flip goal celebration, or pointed up at the sky, dedicating the goal to his late father.
Del Piero Zone
The football media refer to a "Del Piero Zone" ("Gol alla Del Piero" in Italian language), a style of scoring involving approaching from the left flank and curling a precise curled lob into the far top corner of the goal, from outside the area. The "Del Piero Zone" has been used to describe the goals of other players who scored in this way.
Del Piero is married to Sonia Amoruso and the two have been together since 1999 and married in 2005. They have three children, son Tobias (born 2007), daughter Dorotea (born 2009) and son Sasha (born 2010).
When the Olympic Flame for the 2006 Winter Olympics passed through Turin, Del Piero was a torchbearer. He has an interest in sports outside of football, particularly basketball, and in turn has gained fans outside of football; sport icons such as NBA star Steve Nash and cyclist Eddy Merckx have stated that they are fans of Del Piero.
Del Piero has a keen interest in music. He has recorded some of his own albums. Along with Marco Materazzi, Del Piero appeared on stage at a Rolling Stones show in Milan shortly after Italy's World Cup win. He is a good friend of musician and singer Noel Gallagher and a fan of his former band Oasis. Del Piero appears in the Oasis video "Lord Don't Slow Me Down". One of Del Piero's inspirations as a youngster was Japanese football manga Captain Tsubasa.
Del Piero has promoted and supported a number of charities. In 1998 he donated 5.200.000 lire to "Fondazione Bambini in Emergenza" (for abandoned children and victims of AIDS) auctioning his Juventus's shirt. 
In 2001, he was ambassador for "Un gol per la ricerca" (for the cancer research). In 2006, he was AIRC testimonial for the cancer research and in recognition of this, he has received from President of Italy a prize of "Believe in Research".
In 2008, he has participated in a golf tournament organized by the foundation of Gianluca Vialli and Massimo Mauro for Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis research. In 2009, he played a friendly match at Stadio Olimpico with his team "Ale 10+"; the collection (180.000 €) was donated to solidarity projects.
In 2010, he auctioned off his Juventus's shirt number 10 for the foundation "Un Campo per L'Aquila". On 1 April 2011, he launched the project "ale10friendsforjapan" which he designed to help Japanese earthquake victims creating a website to sell t-shirts and collecting 303.880 €.
In 2011, he has participated in a golf tournament, "Fondazione Sant'Anna Cup – Crescere insieme", for the neonatal intensive care unit of the hospital Sant'Anna. On 21 July 2012, he played a friendly match at Kashima Stadium organized by J. League (Del Piero scored one goal and he left the field with a standing ovation); the collection was donated to the Japanese earthquake victims of 2011.
TV, games, and publicity
Del Piero has been used in many advertising broadcasts. He is under contract with German sports equipment manufacturer Adidas, Uliveto water, Fiat, Japanese motorbike company Suzuki, Pepsi, Bliss, Cepu, Walt Disney and Upper Deck.
Del Piero is also known for his sense of humour and is a popular guest at Italian comedy shows such as Paperissima and Striscia la notizia. He featured in the film "L'allenatore nel pallone 2" and in the show La sai l'ultima di Totti, a series of short comedy sketches created by his good friend and Roma captain Francesco Totti in which the two of them and national teammates former A.C. Milan defender Alessandro Nesta, Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon and striker Antonio Cassano would tell jokes and anecdotes about one another.
Del Piero was featured on the cover of EA Sports FIFA Football 2004 video game, alongside Thierry Henry and Ronaldinho, and FIFA World Cup 2006 video game. He was one of the two stars featured on the cover of the Italian version of PES 2010 video game, the other being FC Barcelona and Lionel Messi.
- As of 18 April 2014.
||This section possibly contains original research. (April 2013)|
- Juventus All-Time Leading Scorer (290 goals: 186 goals in open play, 62 goals from penalties, 42 goals from free-kicks)
- Juventus All-Time decisive goals holder (135)
- Juventus All-Time minutes played holder (48,363)
- 1st place in the ranking of players who played for Sydney, who scored the most goals in one season (14)
- 1st place in the ranking of players, who played in Serie A, who scored the most free kicks for their clubs (43 goals, with Siniša Mihajlović)
- The only Italian player who scored more than 10 goals in more seasons (16 seasons)
- Serie A: 1994–95, 1996–97, 1997–98, 2001–02, 2002–03, 2004–05[nb 1], 2005–06[nb 1], 2011–12
- Serie B: 2006–07
- Coppa Italia: 1994–95; Runner-up: 2001–02, 2003–04, 2011–12
- Supercoppa Italiana: 1995, 1997, 2002, 2003
- UEFA Champions League: 1995–96; Runner-up: 1996–97, 1997–98, 2002–03
- UEFA Cup Runner-up: 1994–95
- UEFA Super Cup: 1996
- UEFA Intertoto Cup: 1999
- Intercontinental Cup: 1996
- Torneo di Viareggio: 1994
- Campionato Nazionale Primavera: 1993–94
- ESM Team of the Year: 1995–96, 1996–97, 1997–98
- Most Valuable Player Intercontinental Cup: 1996
- European Footballer of the Year Under-21: 1996
- FIFA 100
- UEFA Golden Jubilee Poll: Top 50 1954–2004, Top 250 1994–2003
- Giuseppe Prisco National Award: 2006
- USSI Prize-Italian sportsman of the year: 2006
- Special Prize Gentleman Silver Cup: 2006
- San Siro Gentleman Award Serie A: 2006
- Golden Foot to career: 2007
- Telegatto-Best Sportsman: 2007
- Scirea Award to career: 2008
- USSI Silver Ball: 2008
- International Award for Sport and Civility-Ambassador of Sports: 2009
- Sportsman of the Year Golden Award: 2010
- Globe Soccer Award: 2011
- Novara Fair Play Award: 2011
- Oscar AIC-Italian Footballer ot the Year: 1998, 2008
- Oscar AIC-Top scorer: 2008
- Oscar AIC-Serie A Fan Award: 2001, 2008
- Oscar AIC-Award to Career: 2011
- UEFA Champions League Top scorer: 1995–96 (6 goals), 1997–98 (10 goals)
- Tournoi de France-Top scorer: 1997 (3 goals)
- Coppa Italia-Top scorer: 2005–06 (5 goals)
- Serie B-Top scorer: 2006–07 (20 goals)
- Serie A-Top scorer: 2007–08 (21 goals)
- Sydney FC Player of the Year Award: 2013
- Sydney FC Golden Boot: 2013
- Sydney FC Members Award: 2013
- PFA Team of the Season: 2013
- A-League goal of the season: 2012–2013
5th Class/Knight: Cavaliere Ordine al Merito della Repubblica Italiana: 2000
Collar of Merit Sports: 2006
4th Class/Officer: Ufficiale Ordine al Merito della Repubblica Italiana: 2006
- This title was revoked through the courts following the Calciopoli scandal.
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