|Number of teams||Varied|
|Most successful club(s)||Modena (2 titles)|
The Anglo-Italian Cup (or Anglo-Italian Inter-League Clubs Competition) is a defunct European football competition that was played intermittently between 1970 and 1996 between clubs from England and Italy. Founded by Gigi Peronace in 1970, following the success of the Anglo-Italian League Cup, it was played as a professional tournament until 1973. Swindon Town were the first victors in a match that was abandoned early due to violence. During its time the tournament had a reputation for violence between fans, but it returned as a semi-professional tournament in 1976 and was known as the Alitalia Challenge Cup, Talbot Challenge Cup and Gigi Peronace Memorial before it was abolished again in 1986. The tournament was re-established in 1992 as replacement for the Full Members Cup. The professional event for second tier clubs ran for four seasons before being abandoned due to fixture congestion. The trophy was a 22-inch (56 cm) high gold loving cup mounted on a wooden plinth.
From 1967, a place in the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup was awarded to the Football League Cup winners, but that season's winners, Queens Park Rangers, could not take up their place because UEFA did not at that time allow third-tier teams to compete in the Fairs Cup. When the same situation arose two years later with Swindon Town, a two-legged match against that year's Coppa Italia winners, A.S. Roma, was organised by way of compensation. Following the popularity of that event, dubbed the Anglo-Italian League Cup, and as a way to generate income to pay players' wages during the extended close season caused by the 1970 FIFA World Cup, the first Anglo-Italian Cup was inaugurated in 1970. For the first competition there were six English teams and six Italian teams. These teams were split into three groups consisting of two English and two Italian teams each, with two points being awarded for a win, one point for a draw, and a point for each goal scored. The final was contested between the best team from each country, and Swindon played Napoli at the Stadio San Paolo on 28 May 1970. Swindon were 3–0 up after 63 minutes, when violence started to break out. The match had to be abandoned after 79 minutes, with Swindon being declared as the first winners of the tournament.
The next year, after the group matches, Blackpool and Bologna were the two nations' best ranked teams and contested a final at the Stadio Renato Dall'Ara on 12 June 1971. Prior to the match, tournament organiser Gigi Peronace stressed that it was imperative for an Italian club to win back the trophy. After 90 minutes the score was 1–1 and the match went into extra-time, during which Micky Burns scored the winning goal for Blackpool. Blackpool qualified for the final again the following year, but were unsuccessful in their defence of the title, with Roma winning 3–1. In 1973, points were no longer awarded for each goal scored, and Newcastle United went on to win the final 2–1 against Fiorentina at the Stadio Artemio Franchi on 3 June 1973. Due to lack of interest the tournament did not continue, and it was not until 1976 that it re-emerged as a semi-professional competition.
In March 1976, the Anglo-Italian Cup was re-introduced as a semi-professional tournament, with six entrants from each country. Wimbledon and Monza reached the final, with Monza winning the final 1–0, making them unbeaten for the tournament. For the next two years Bath City were the English finalists but they lost to Lecco in 1977, and Udinese in 1978, when the tournament was renamed the Alitalia Challenge Cup. In 1979, each country had four entrants and Sutton United defeated Italian finalists Chieti 2–1 to become the first and only English winners of the competition during its time as a semi-professional competition. Attempting to defend their title the following year, Sutton United reached the final but were defeated by Triestina. In 1981, the tournament was called the Talbot Challenge Cup and Modena were the winners. The following year the tournament was renamed the Gigi Peronace Memorial, after the man who organised the tournament, and reduced to four teams. The new format consisted of two Anglo-Italian semi-finals, which meant the final was not necessarily contested by an English and an Italian team. That year, Modena successfully defended their title in a final against Sutton United, who were the last English team to reach the final of the semi-professional tournament. For the next four years the finals were all-Italian contests, and after the 1986 instalment the tournament was abolished.
Professional tournament again
The competition was re-established in 1992–93 as a replacement for the Full Members Cup. It was a professional tournament for teams competing in the second tier of football—the newly renamed First Division in England and Serie B in Italy. In the preliminary rounds, 24 English teams competed in 8 groups. Each team played the other two teams in its group once, and the winner of each group went through to the main competition. The main competition consisted of two groups each with four English, and four Italian teams. Each team played all the teams in its group from the other nation, and after all matches had been played the best English team in each group played each other in a semi-final, with the best two Italian teams competing in the other semi-final. The final was a single match played at Wembley, and Derby County lost the 1993 final 3–1 to Cremonese. Brescia won the final in 1994 against Notts County, but Notts County reached the final again in 1995 and defeated Ascoli 2–1. The last instalment of the competition was held in 1995–96, and Genoa triumphed 5–2 over Port Vale in the final on 17 March 1996. The competition was abandoned in 1996 because the two leagues could not agree on dates for fixtures, and due to increasing violence at matches.
For the original professional tournament the English entrants were either First Division or Second Division sides, with the First Division sides generally being those teams who had just finished in the lower half of the table, whilst the Second Division sides were generally mid-table or better. When the competition was revived in the 1990s, for the first two seasons all English sides playing in the First Division (2nd level) participated, but in the last two tournaments only 8 English teams played. In 1994/95 the teams playing were two of the relegated clubs from the Premiership and six teams that had just missed out on promotion, but for 1995/96 only one of the teams that had been relegated played, and the remaining teams had generally finished mid to low table in the previous First Division campaign, with the exception of Birmingham City, who had just been promoted from the Second Division.
With the exception of Bari and Como in 1973, all Italian teams playing in the 1970s tournament had just competed in the previous Serie A season, and were often mid-table or higher finishers who had sometimes also qualified for the European competitions. The Italian participants in the revived 1990s tournament were the four teams that had just been relegated from Serie A and the four teams that had finished highest but not been promoted in Serie B. The exception to this was Verona, who were relegated in 1991/92, but did not play in the 1992/93 cup.
Table of participants and performance by season
Won tournament; runner-up; lost in semi-final (English or Italian final); lost in quarter-final (English or Italian semi-final); eliminated in group stage; eliminated in preliminary qualifying.
- Anglo-Italian League Cup – a two-legged fixture between the winners of the FA Cup and the Coppa Italia, played intermittently from 1969 to 1976
- Coppa Ottorino Barassi – a two-legged fixture contested from 1968 to 1976 between the Italian Coppa Italia Dilettanti winner and the English FA Amateur Cup winner (1968–74) or the Isthmian League Second Division champion (1975–76).
- "When Palace humbled Inter". The Holmesdale Online. 25 February 2009. Retrieved 31 August 2009.
- Murray, Scott (26 June 2009). "The Joy of Six: Extinct football competitions – 3 Anglo-Italian Cup". The Sport Blog. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 7 February 2011.
- Lawford, Mark (18 December 2008). "United prepare to join the list of football's most worthless medal winners along with Spurs, Liverpool, Villa, Derby, Forest, Chelsea, Chesterfield, Stoke, Blackburn and Everton". Daily Mail. Archived from the original on 2 October 2009. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- "Bologna 1, Blackpool 2 – Anglo-Italian Cup Final, June 12, 1971". Blackpool Gazette. 20 September 2006. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- "Anglo-Italian Cup Winners". Notts County F.C. 18 January 2008. Retrieved 4 February 2011.
- Murray, Scott (12 November 2008). "Why the League Cup still has its place in English football". The Guardian. London: Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 1 September 2009.
- Murphy, Alex (2 May 2009). "Mike Keen: Footballer who captained Third Division Queen's Park Rangers to League Cup victory in 1967". The Independent. London: Independent News & Media. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- King, Clive (28 August 1969). "Swindon outplay Italians to win cup". Swindon Advertiser. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- Sheldon, Peter. "Under the Shadow of Mighty Vesuvius". Swindon's pride. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- "Blackpool 10 LANEROSSI VICENZA 0 Anglo-Italian Cup, June 10, 1972". Blackpool Gazette. 6 November 2006. Retrieved 2 September 2009.
- Andrea Veronese (12 April 2004 (updated)). "Anglo-Italian Cup 1970". RSSSF. Retrieved 2 May 2012.
- Gillatt, Peter (30 November 2009). Blackpool FC on This Day: History, Facts and Figures from Every Day of the Year. Pitch Publishing Ltd. ISBN 1-905411-50-2.
- "I've had countless drinks for my goal against Sunderland". Evening Chronicle. 15 January 2002. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- "Anglo-Italian Cup 1973". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- "Anglo-Italian Cup 1976". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- "Anglo-Italian Cup 1977". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- "Anglo-Italian Cup 1978". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- "Anglo-Italian Cups". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- "Club Info". Sutton United F.C. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- "Anglo-Italian Cup 1980". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- "Anglo-Italian Cup 1981". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- Formosa, Tony (27 February 2005). "‘King John’ and ‘Angel with Dirty Face’". Malta Today. Retrieved 30 August 2009.
- "Anglo-Italian Cup 1982". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- "Anglo-Italian Cup 1992/93". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- "Rams Celebrate Lionel Pickering". Derby County F.C. 28 July 2009. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- Shaw, Phil (18 March 1996). "Genoa produce high strike-rate". The Independent. London: Independent News & Media. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- "Anglo-Italian Cup has been scrapped". The Independent (London: Independent News & Media). 12 September 1996. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
- Paul Felton (4 September 2008 (updated)). "England – Football Statistics Archive – League Records". RSSSF. Retrieved 4 September 2011.
- Tamas Karpati and Igor Kramarsic (12 May 2011 (updated)). "Italy – List of Champions". Links to Italian tables by season. RSSSF. Retrieved 4 September 2011.
- Andrea Veronese (15 October 2000 (updated)). "Anglo-Italian Cup 1971". RSSSF. Retrieved 22 July 2012.
- 1972 competition results at RSSSF
- 1973 competition results at RSSSF
- 1992/93 competition results at RSSSF
- 1993/94 competition results at RSSSF
- 1994/95 competition results at RSSSF
- 1995/96 competition results at RSSSF