Massimo Maccarone

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Massimo Maccarone
Massimo Maccarone.jpg
Maccarone training with Palermo in 2010
Personal information
Date of birth (1979-09-06) 6 September 1979 (age 35)
Place of birth Galliate, Italy
Height 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)
Playing position Forward
Club information
Current team
Number 7
Youth career
1996–1998 Milan
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1998–2000 Milan 0 (0)
1998 Modena (loan) 0 (0)
1998–1999 Prato (loan) 21 (4)
1999 Varese (loan) 3 (0)
1999–2000 Prato (loan) 28 (20)
2000–2002 Empoli 68 (26)
2002–2007 Middlesbrough 81 (18)
2004 Parma (loan) 7 (0)
2005 Siena (loan) 11 (6)
2007–2010 Siena 102 (34)
2010–2011 Palermo 18 (2)
2011–2012 Sampdoria 28 (6)
2012– Empoli 99 (38)
National team
1995 Italy U15 2 (1)
1995–1996 Italy U16 4 (1)
1998–1999 Italy U20 5 (3)
2000–2002 Italy U21 15 (11)
2002 Italy 2 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of end of 1314 season.
† Appearances (Goals).

Massimo Maccarone (Italian pronunciation: [ˈmassimo makkaˈrone]; born 6 September 1979) is an Italian association football striker currently playing for Empoli.

He made headlines in March 2002 when he became the first Serie B player in twenty years to be picked for the Italian national side. He is nicknamed Big Mac.[1]


Early career[edit]

Maccarone started his career at AC Milan's youth system. In 1998, he went on loan to Modena, but did not make a single appearance. In 1999, he was transferred to Serie C2 team Prato (in a co-ownership deal), scoring 20 goals in 28 league matches, finishing the season as the top scorer in the 1999-2000 Serie C2 season. In 2000, he was bought back by Milan and transferred to Empoli F.C., helping the club get promoted to Serie A during the 2001–02 season. In the same period, he was one of the most outstanding players of the Italian U21 team which reached the semi-finals in the 2002 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship. As a result, he was noticed by several teams.


Maccarone was signed by English Premier League team Middlesbrough on 9 July 2002 for £8.15 million (€12.7 million).[2]

In 2002 he played twice for Italy. In one of these appearances he came on as a late substitute against England with the score level at 1–1. In injury time Maccarone was fouled in the area by the English goalkeeper David James, allowing Vincenzo Montella to score the winning goal from the penalty spot.[3]

Maccarone was an unused substitute when Middlesbrough won the 2004 Football League Cup Final.[4] Despite showing fine early form in his first few matches for Middlesbrough, the remainder of his spell at the club was a struggle to justify his price tag and during the first half of the 2004–05 season he was loaned out to Serie A club Parma, and in January 2005 to Siena.[5]

Maccarone returned to Middlesbrough for the 2005–06 season, and despite not being a regular first-team player, endeared himself to the Middlesbrough fans, especially through his work-rate and attitude. The player's spell at Middlesbrough is remembered for two last minute winners in key UEFA Cup ties in 2006. He scored against Basel in the second leg of the quarter-finals, a tie in which Middlesbrough overturned a three-goal deficit to win 4–3 on aggregate.[6] In the semi-final of the same competition he came on as a substitute and scored twice in the aggregate 4–3 win over Steaua Bucharest,[7] once again in the 90th minute, taking Boro to the final in Eindhoven, in which he came on as a substitute. Following his exploits in the semi-final, fellow Middlesbrough striker Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink declared "Massimo, I love him until I die... it's unbelievable".[8]


Despite these heroics, he made few appearances for Middlesbrough in the following season and in January 2007, Maccarone moved to Siena in a free transfer, signing a three-year contract.[9] In February 2007, he made headlines by criticising former Middlesbrough and then-England manager Steve McClaren for his "ineptitude", causing his club's chairman Steve Gibson to call Maccarone "a fool".[10]

On 11 February 2007, he played his first Serie A match after his Siena return, against Cagliari.[11] Maccarone scored a brace in the 4–3 defeat against A.C. Milan on 17 February, to register his first goals for Siena.[12] He finished the season with six goals, and added 13 in the following (club best by a long margin), as Siena achieved two consecutive 13th league places. After the club was relegated at the end of the 2009–10 season, Maccarone agreed a move to Sicilian Serie A club Palermo, signing a three-year deal with the rosanero, for €4.5 million.[13][14]


His stint at Palermo however turned out to be a disappointing one, with only two league goals in 18 games, leading the Sicilians to put him into transfer.


On 24 January 2011, Maccarone signed for Sampdoria for €2.7 million in 2½ year contract.[15][16][17]


From January 2012 to June 2014 Maccarone returned to Empoli in temporary deal.[18][19][20] His contract was also extended to 30 June 2015 in 2012 financial year.[21] On 17 July 2014 he was allowed to join Empoli on free transfer.[22][23]


During his time at Empoli, Macccarone made his debut with the Italy Under-21 side under Marco Tardelli. He later earned a place as a starting striker in Claudio Gentile's Italy Under-21 side between 2000-2002.[24] In total, he scored 11 goals with the Under-21 side in 15 appearances, and he took part at the 2002 Under-21 European Championship with Italy, where he finished as the tournament's top scorer, with 3 goals, helping Italy to reach the semi-finals, where they lost out to the eventual champions, the Czech Republic.[25]

Due to Christian Vieri's injury, Giovanni Trapattoni called Maccarone up to the Italian senior side, at the age of 22 for a friendly against England in Leeds on the 27 March 2002. He came on in the 75th minute, and he won a penalty which was converted by Montella, which allowed the Italians to win the match 2-1. Interestingly enough, Maccarone had scored against the England Under-21 side earlier that week. It had been over seventy years that a Serie B player had made his debut with the Italian national side before making his Serie A debut.[26] He made his second and final appearance for the Italian senior side on the 16 October against Wales, finishing his senior international career with 2 appearances and no goals in 2002.[25]

Style of play[edit]

Maccarone predominantly plays as a striker, although he is also capable of being deployed as a supporting forward or as a winger, where he is able to move into the centre of the pitch to shoot with his stronger foot, due to his striking ability from distance, and his eye for goal. Maccarone is capable of shooting with both feet, and he possesses good tactical intelligence, pace, and technique.[27]




  1. ^ "Big Mac al Parma L'ha deciso lui" (in Italian). La Gazzetta dello Sport. 1 September 2004. Retrieved 2009-07-10. 
  2. ^ "Maccarone signs in". BBC Sport (British Broadcasting Corporation). 9 July 2002. Retrieved 7 February 2012. 
  3. ^ "Montella stuns England". BBC. 27 March 2002. Retrieved 21 January 2013. 
  4. ^ "Boro lift Carling Cup". BBC News. 29 February 2004. 
  5. ^ "Maccarone makes switch to Siena". BBC Sport (British Broadcasting Corporation). 4 January 2005. Retrieved 7 February 2012. 
  6. ^ "Middlesbrough 4–1 Basle (agg 4–3)". BBC. 6 April 2006. Retrieved 23 October 2009. 
  7. ^ "M'brough 4–2 S B'chrst (agg 4–3)". BBC. 27 April 2006. Retrieved 23 October 2009. 
  8. ^ Middlesbrough, Sevilla advance to UEFA Cup final
  9. ^ "Maccarone è bianconero". AC Siena (in Italian). 30 January 2007. Retrieved 4 September 2010. 
  10. ^ Gibson: "Massimo's a fool"
  11. ^ "Tactical Formation". Retrieved 15 February 2007. 
  12. ^ "Siena 3–4 AC Milan". ESPNSoccernet. 17 February 2007. Retrieved 8 February 2012. 
  13. ^ US Città di Palermo Report and Accounts on 30 June 2010 (Italian)
  14. ^ "MASSIMO MACCARONE NUOVO ACQUISTO DEL PALERMO" (in Italian). US Città di Palermo. 15 June 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-15. 
  15. ^ "MACCARONE CEDUTO ALLA SAMPDORIA" (in Italian). US Città di Palermo. 24 January 2011. Retrieved 24 January 2011. 
  16. ^ "Massimo Maccarone alla Sampdoria a titolo definitivo" (in Italian). UC Sampdoria. 24 January 2011. Retrieved 6 July 2014. 
  17. ^ Relazione sulla Gestione of UC Sampdoria Report and Accounts on 31 December 2010 (Italian)
  18. ^ "Massimo Maccarone ceduto all'Empoli a titolo temporaneo" (in Italian). UC Sampdoria. 26 January 2012. Retrieved 6 July 2014. 
  19. ^ "Maccarone torna all'Empoli, Scappini va al Pisa" (in Italian). UC Sampdoria. 31 August 2012. Retrieved 6 July 2014. 
  20. ^ "Regini torna alla Samp, Maccarone in prestito ad Empoli" (in Italian). UC Sampdoria. 20 June 2013. Retrieved 6 July 2014. 
  21. ^ UC Sampdoria SpA bilancio (financial report and accounts) on 31 December 2012 (Italian)
  22. ^ "Rescissione consensuale del contratto di Massimo Maccarone" (in Italian). UC Sampdoria. 17 July 2014. Retrieved 17 July 2014. 
  23. ^ "Massimo Maccarone ha firmato" (in Italian). Empoli FC. 17 July 2014. Retrieved 17 July 2014. 
  24. ^ Piccardi, Gaia. "Maccarone vuole consolarsi con i soldi". Il Corriere della Sera. Retrieved 12 February 2015. 
  25. ^ a b "Convocazioni e presenze in campo: Massimo Maccarone". Retrieved 12 February 2015. 
  26. ^ Gaia, Piccardi. "Maccarone, il Cenerentolo azzurro che arriva dalla B". Il Corriere della Sera. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  27. ^ "Massimo Maccarone, la scheda tecnica". Retrieved 12 February 2015. 

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