Andrea Silenzi

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Andrea Silenzi
Personal information
Date of birth (1966-02-10) 10 February 1966 (age 48)
Place of birth Rome, Italy
Height 1.91 m (6 ft 3 in)
Playing position Centre forward
Youth career
Pescatori Ostia
Lodigiani
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1984–1987 Lodigiani 49 (18)
1987–1988 Arezzo 19 (0)
1988–1990 Reggiana 67 (32)
1990–1992 Napoli 39 (6)
1992–1995 Torino 82 (24)
1995–1997 Nottingham Forest 12 (0)
1996–1997 Venezia (loan) 26 (4)
1997–1998 Reggiana 8 (0)
1998–1999 Ravenna 23 (3)
1999–2000 Torino 11 (2)
2000–2001 Ravenna 7 (0)
Total 343 (89)
National team
1994 Italy 1 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

Andrea Silenzi (born 10 February 1966) is an Italian retired footballer who played as a centre forward.

He was known for his goal-poaching ability, but at a highly inconsistent level. The scorer of 89 league goals during his career, Silenzi was also the first Italian to play in the Premier League, when he signed with Nottingham Forest in 1995.

Over the course of six seasons Silenzi amassed Serie A totals of 132 games and 32 goals, with Napoli and Torino.

Club career[edit]

Early years[edit]

Silenzi was born in Rome. Nicknamed Pennellone (Big brush) due to his height, he began his playing career with local club A.S. Lodigiani. During his third season there he started scoring, and finished as second top scorer in Serie C2, with 18 goals. In the next season he moved to Serie B with A.C. Arezzo, but the campaign was a disaster both individually and collectively; the club finished last and was relegated to Serie C1, with the player appearing in 19 games and failing to find the net once.

Silenzi was transferred to another third level club, A.C. Reggiana 1919, for 1988–89, where his fortunes changed dramatically. The club won promotion that year, finishing in first place, with Slienzi contributing nine goals in 31 appearances. The next season he fared even better, finishing the season as the league's top scorer in division two; he scored an astonishing 23 goals out of the squad's 33, doing it in 38 matches, the best goal-per-match ratio in the competition.

Napoli / Torino[edit]

Silenzi's prolific scoring garnered the attention of Scudetto and Coppa Italia winners S.S.C. Napoli, which was looking to strengthen its attacking options, in a side which featured the great Diego Maradona. 1990–91 started brightly, with Napoli capturing the Supercoppa Italiana – a 5–1 thrashing of Juventus FC, with him contributing with two of the five goals. However, the rest of that season proved unlucky for the player, who only managed two Serie A goals (Maradona only netted six, all on penalties); the club finished eighth but went on to rank fourth the following year, mainly thanks to the firepower of Careca and Gianfranco Zola, who had taken over for the banned Maradona – Silenzi only scored four times in 20 games.

The next season Silenzi, aged 26, was signed by Torino FC, brought in with some of the funds that the club made on the then world-record sale of Gianluigi Lentini to A.C. Milan. The team finished in ninth place, and he again grabbed only a handful of league goals (three). The only bright spot of the campaign was the conquest of the team's fourth Italian Cup, as he endeared himself to the club's fans with his display in the final, where Toro defeated A.S. Roma after two legs on the away goals rule, the aggregate score being 5–5; he scored both of the crucial goals in the second leg in Rome (2–5 loss).

In 1993–94 Silenzi had his best top flight year, as he finished the season with 17 goals, (tied for third in the scorers list) and the club managed to reach the semi-finals of the domestic cup. He spearheaded the attacking trio of Enzo Francescoli and a young Benito Carbone, and his impressive form garnered him a call-up to the national team in early 1994; The following year saw the arrival of Ruggiero Rizzitelli at Torino, and he took over the leading goal-scoring spot from Silenzi, netting 15 more goals (19 to four).

Nottingham Forest[edit]

In the summer of 1995, Silenzi was signed by Nottingham Forest's manager Frank Clark for £1.8m, becoming the first ever Italian to play in the Premier League. However, he never fitted into the set-up at the City Ground, playing only ten league games in the 1995–96 season; after only two appearances in the following campaign, he returned to his country and joined S.S.C. Venezia on loan.

In total, Silenzi made only 20 official appearances (seven starts) for Forest, scoring only twice: one in the FA Cup against Oxford United[1] and one in the League Cup against Bradford City.[2] It is alleged that his contract was torn up by manager Dave Bassett (who took over in March 1997), for allegedly refusing to return from his loan spell at Venezia.[3] In the English press he is considered as one of the worst ever signings by a club in the country,[4] his failure at City Ground reportedly costing the club nearly £3million.

Late career[edit]

Silenzi continued his playing career with various clubs back in Italy, going on to play for Reggiana and Ravenna Calcio for a season each, and also returning to Torino for a solitary season, his two goals being too little to save Emiliano Mondonico's side from top division relegation. He finished his playing career in 2001 at the age of 35, with another return, at Ravenna, playing seven scoreless matches in 2000–01's second level.

International career[edit]

Silenzi's only international cap for Italy came on 16 February 1994, as he played against France as part of the warm-up process for the FIFA World Cup being held that summer. In the match held in Naples (0–1 loss), he came on as a second-half substitute.

Honours[edit]

Team[edit]

Reggiana
Napoli
Torino

Individual[edit]

  • Serie B: Top scorer, Chevron Award (best goal-per-game ratio) 1989–90

Personal life[edit]

Silenzi is a Protestant, belonging to the Seventh-day Adventist Church.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Campbell steers Forest home". The Independent. 14 February 1996. Retrieved 1 February 2011. 
  2. ^ "Ormondroyd fells Forest". The Independent. 5 October 1995. Retrieved 1 February 2011. 
  3. ^ Patrick Johnston (19 July 2007). "Signing Serie A strikers a dangerous game". Reuters. Retrieved 10 September 2007. 
  4. ^ David Hills (6 August 2000). "The 10 worst foreign signings of all time". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 21 August 2007. Retrieved 10 September 2007. 
  5. ^ "Silenzi, c'è Sacchi che lo guarda" [Silenzi, Sacchi's watching] (in Italian). Corriere della Sera. 5 December 1993. Retrieved 12 January 2012. 

External links[edit]