|Full name||Parma Football Club S.p.A.|
|Nickname(s)||I Crociati (The Crusaders)
I Gialloblù (The Yellow and Blues)
I Ducali (The Duchy Men)
Gli Emiliani (The Emilians)
|Founded||16 December 1913
, as Verdi Foot Ball Club|
2004 as Parma FC
|Ground||Stadio Ennio Tardini,
|Head coach||Roberto Donadoni|
|2013–14||Serie A, 6th|
|Website||Club home page|
Parma Football Club (formerly Parma Associazione Calcio), commonly referred to as just Parma, is an Italian professional football club based in Parma, Emilia–Romagna that will compete in Serie A in the 2013-14 season, having finished in tenth position last season. Founded as Verdi Foot Ball Club in December 1913, the club has played its home matches in the 27,906-seat Stadio Ennio Tardini, often referred to as simply Il Tardini, since 1923.
Although Parma has never won a domestic league title and never competed for major trophies until the 1990s, it has won three Italian Cups, one Supercoppa Italiana, two UEFA Cups, one European Super Cup and one UEFA Cup Winners' Cup. Bankrolled by Calisto Tanzi, the club won these eight trophies between 1992 and 2002, a period in which it achieved its best ever league finish – as runners-up in the 1996–97 season – and threatened the dominance of the league's established powers: Juventus, Milan and Internazionale, the only Italian sides to have had more success in European competition than Parma.
More recently, Parma's financial troubles have limited the club's ambitions. These were brought about in late 2003 by the Parmalat scandal which caused the parent company to collapse and resulted in the club operating in controlled administration until January 2007. The club has traditionally played attractive football and developed players through the club's academy. Despite the recent downturn in success, the club is an associated member and one of nine Italian clubs that are part of the European Club Association, a representative collection of Europe's most elite clubs, formed after the dissolution of the G-14.
- 1 History
- 2 Colours and badge
- 3 Grounds
- 4 Support
- 5 Ownership and finances
- 6 Players
- 7 Club officials
- 8 Honours
- 9 Notes
- 10 Footnotes
- 11 Bibliography
- 12 External links
Early years (1913–1968)
A club was founded in July 1913 as Verdi Foot Ball Club in honour of the centenary of famous opera composer Giuseppe Verdi, who was born in the province of Parma. It adopted yellow and blue as its colours. In December of the same year, Parma Foot Ball Club was formed from many of the original club's players and began wearing white shirts emblazoned with a black cross. Parma began playing league football during the 1919–20 season after the end of World War I and began construction of a stadium, the Stadio Ennio Tardini, two years later. Parma became a founder member of Serie B after finishing as runners-up in the Prima Divisione in the 1928–29 season. The club would remain in Serie B for three years before being relegated and changing its name to Associazione Sportiva Parma in 1931. In the 1935–36 season, Parma became a founding member of Serie C, where the club stayed until winning promotion back to Serie B in 1943. Italian football was then brought to a halt as the Second World War intensified, although the team did make an appearance in the Campianto Alta Italia in 1944.
Following the restart of organised football, Parma spent three years in Serie B, then split into two regional divisions, before again being relegated in 1948–49 to Serie C. The side would spend another five seasons in Serie C before an eleven-year spell in Serie B that included the achievement of ninth position in 1954–55, a club record at that time. This was an era in which the club's players generally held down other jobs or were still in education and where the town's amateur rugby union and volleyball sides, Rugby Parma F.C. 1931 and Ferrovieri Parma, proved more popular among the more privileged. Parma made its debut in European competition during the 1960–61 season, defeating Swiss side AC Bellinzona in the Coppa delle Alpi, but relegation to Serie C followed in 1964–65 season. Parma spent just one season in Serie C before a second successive relegation, this time to Serie D, in 1966.
Re-birth and improvement (1968–1989)
The club was in turmoil and was ordered into liquidation by the Court of Parma in 1968, changing its name to Parma Football Club that year. In 1969, another local team, Associazione Calcio Parmense, won promotion to Serie D. On 1 January 1970, A.C. Parmense adopted the sporting licence of the liquidated club which had been formed in 1913. This meant that it had the right to use the crociato shirts, the badge and the city's name. This brought about a change of luck in both financial and sporting terms, as the side was crowned Serie D champions and spent three years in Serie C before promotion to Serie B; however, it was a short stay. The team was relegated back to Serie C in their second season in the division. A return to Serie B did not materialise until the end of the 1970s and the club again lasted only one season in the second division of Italian football.
Under the management of Cesare Maldini, Parma once again returned to Serie B after winning their division in 1984 with victory on the final day over Sanremo; Juventus-bound Stefano Pioli scored the only goal of the game. The Ducali again only spent a year in Serie B, finishing third from bottom and succumbing to relegation as a consequence. Arrigo Sacchi did, however, manage to return the club to Serie B in 1986 after a single season in the third tier. The side enjoyed good success that season in missing out on promotion to Italy's top tier by just three points and eliminating A.C. Milan from the Coppa Italia, a result that convinced owner Silvio Berlusconi to hire Sacchi as the new manager of the Rossoneri. Sacchi's replacement, Zdeněk Zeman, was fired after just seven matches and replaced by Giampieri Vitali, who secured two consecutive mid-table finishes.
Success and insolvency (1989–2004)
Nevio Scala was appointed as head coach in 1989. Scala's Parma secured a historic promotion in 1990 to Serie A with a 2–0 Derby del Grana win over A.C. Reggiana 1919. and investment from parent company Parmalat helped to improve the team's fortunes and the club made its debut in UEFA competition in 1991. Scala led the club to its first four major honour. The first of these was the Coppa Italia in 1991–92, beating Juventus 2–1 over two legs. The following year came the first international triumph in a 3–1 victory in the Cup Winners' Cup over Belgian side Antwerp at Wembley. Later that year, the side was successful in the UEFA Super Cup, overcoming Milan 2–1 on aggregate, but lost the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup final 1–0 against Arsenal. Scala's final success with Parma was in another two-legged final against Juventus: Dino Baggio scored twice to give Parma a 2–1 aggregate win, but Juventus exacted revenge in the Coppa Italia final. Replaced by Carlo Ancelotti, Scala departed in 1996 and was a popular coach for the trophies he won and because the team played attractive football in the tradition of the club.
Ancelotti overhauled the team and guided it to a record second place in 1997. Parma consequently made their debut in the Champions League the following year. Alberto Malesani was installed as coach in 1998 and the club completed a rare cup double in his first season, winning the Coppa Italia final against Fiorentina on the away goals rule and the UEFA Cup against Marseille at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow with a 3–0 victory before Supercoppa Italiana victory over league champions Milan followed in August 1999. In 2000, Hernán Crespo was sold to Lazio for a world record transfer fee and Malesani departed. Under replacement Renzo Ulivieri, the club lost the Coppa Italia final to Fiorentina. Under Pietro Carmignani in 2002, Parma won a third Coppa Italia trophy against Juventus (but would slip to defeat in the 2002 Supercoppa Italiana) and finished outside the top 6 for the first time since promotion in 1990. This success earned them a tag as one of the "Seven Sisters". In April 2004, the club was declared insolvent following the financial meltdown of Parmalat.
Second re-birth (2004–present)
The club re-formed as Parma Football Club in June 2004 and the 2004–05 season saw Parma plummet to their lowest finish in Serie A – despite a second consecutive 23-goal haul from Gilardino, who was then sold for €24m – as managers came and went. Parma ended the following season, their first without European competition since 1991, in tenth, but returned in 2006 after the Calciopoli scandal. On 24 January 2007, Tommaso Ghirardi bought the club out of administration and became the owner and president of Parma F.C. Manager Claudio Ranieri helped the team avoid relegation to Serie B on the final day of the 2006–07 season following his February appointment; however, under a succession of managers, Parma's battle with relegation the following year was not successful, consigning the club to Serie B after eighteen years in the top flight.
Francesco Guidolin won promotion back to Serie A at the first attempt with a second-place finish and led the side to eighth on its return to Serie A in 2009–10, narrowly missing out on qualification for the Europa League before leaving for Udinese. In May 2010, Guidolin swapped jobs with Pasquale Marino, who was sacked by Ghirardi in April 2011 when Parma was caught in another relegation dogfight. Under Marino's replacement, Franco Colomba, Parma escaped the threat of relegation with two games to spare. In January 2012, Colomba was replaced by Roberto Donadoni following a winless run that culminated in a 5-0 loss to Inter and the new coach led the team to eighth position in a Serie A club record 7-match winning run. In 2014, Donadoni guided Parma to sixth in Serie A and a third consecutive top ten finish, but a return to Europe for the first time since 2007 was barred due to the late payment of a tax bill.
Colours and badge
The team is characterised by having used two different colour schemes in recent memory and at its inception. Originally, the club wore yellow and blue chequered shirts in honour of the city's traditional colours, which date back to 1545 when the Duchy of Parma was established, but white shirts with a black cross on the chest were introduced after the First World War, drawing inspiration from Juventus' colours, following a name change. White continued to be worn as the main colour of the home kits for much of the remainder of the century, although often complemented with yellow, blue or both, rather than black. The club did, however, experiment in the 1950s with blue shirts and blue and yellow striped shirts. The cross shirts were restored and worn until bankruptcy in 1968, when white shirts with off-centre blue and yellow vertical bands were worn, but the cross returned from 1970 until 1983 when a yellow and blue-sleeved white shirt was introduced and used for 8 years.
After decades in the lower divisions, Parma was promoted to Serie A in 1990, where the side immediately became a major force in the battle for major trophies, on many notable occasions in direct opposition to Juventus, who would become fierce rivals of Parma's. This rivalry and the influence of Parmalat led to the demotion of the white shirts to the away kit, so the side wore yellow and blue hooped shirts at home for six seasons between 1998 and 2004, and navy blue shirts often worn as third choice in this period. This was a time of great success for the club, thus the shirts have become synonymous with Parma, often still called the Gialloblu (Yellow and Blues) today, despite a recent reversion to the traditional white shirts emblazoned with a cross caused by parent company Parmalat's collapse and the clubs subsequent re-foundation as Parma Football Club. Yellow and blue are normally Parma's away kit colours, used in various combinations since 2004, such as vertical stripes, hoops, crosses or as solid colour designs.
Parma's logo changed in 2005 to reflect the name change from Parma A.C. to Parma F.C., but the logo otherwise remains the same, encompassing the city colours of yellow and blue and the club's traditional black cross set on a white background, and has not changed much in years, although it was dramatically overhauled to feature a prancing bull for one season in 2000–01 before it was criticised and discontinued in favour of the old badge.
Parma initially had no permanent home and used the Piazza d'Armi, where two wooden posts constituted the frame of each goal. In December 1914, the club began to use land between the Via Emilia, the Eridania refinery and the Ferraguti factory, but it was sold, so the club returned to the Piazza d'Armi before transferring to the Tre Pioppi, the first fenced-off pitch in the city. Parma moved into their current stadium, the Stadio Ennio Tardini, in 1923, although the stadium has since been overhauled and altered drastically from the vision of Ennio Tardini, under whose auspices the stadium was to be built, but who died before completion of the venue. Much of the renovation took place after the club's first promotion to Serie A at the start of the 1990s. The stadium's usable capacity stands at 27,906, but only 23,045 are authorised to enter at once following the 2009 death of Vicenza fan Eugene Bortolon in the Curva Sud.
Expansion or renovation plans are often discussed at the highest level of the club's hierarchy and the Comune di Parma, but no project has received unanimous support. This is partly because the football club rent the stadium and often have interests which conflict with those of the municipal authority. The tenancy expires in 2031. One project which both club and council had agreed on was the potential redevelopment for Italy's potential hosting of Euro 2016. The bid was eventually unsuccessful, but included plans for an improved 31,397 all-seater stadium. An alternative to the development of the Tardini is the construction of a new stadium. Recent reports suggest the stadium is unfit for use in UEFA competitions due to the inadequacy of its seating. Either way, the state of stadium ownership in Italy, where only Juventus own their stadium, is widely viewed as unsatisfactory.
The first team trains and plays most of its home friendly matches at the Centro Sportivo di Collecchio in Collecchio, which is located 15.4 kilometres to the south-west of the stadium. Three of Parma's youth teams – the under-20s, the under-17s and the under-16s – play their home matches in the same complex. The under-15s and below train at Campi Stuard.
The supporters of Parma are seen as placid fans, something for which they are derided. Traditionally, they have been seen as fans who enjoy the spectacle of football and are less partisan, although they have been more characterised by impatience of late. In Northeast Italy, the team is the fifth best supported, behind Internazionale, Juventus, A.C. Milan and Bologna, the first three of which are not based in that region. They are represented by three main groups: il Centro di Coordinamento dei Parma Club (which represents most of the fanbase), l'Associazione Petitot and the club's ultras, Boys Parma, which was established on 3 August 1977 by young fans wanting to split from the Centro di Coordinamento and to encourage meetings with opposition fans. The Boys Parma occupy the northern end of the home stadium, La Curva Nord, directly opposite to where the away fans sit in the south stand. In 2008, the Curva Nord was renamed in honour of Boys Parma 1977 member Matteo Bagnaresi, who died when he was run over on the way to the Tardini by a coach which was carrying the opposition Juventus fans. In a not uncommon practice, the number 12 shirt has been reserved for the Parma fans, meaning no player is registered to play with that number on his kit for the club. The implication is that the supporters, particularly those of the famous Curva Nord, are the twelfth man. The last player to be registered with the number was Gabriele Giroli for the 2002–03 season. Parma's club anthem is Il grido di battaglia, which means The Battle Cry. For 2011–12, Parma had 7,559 season ticket holders.
Parma maintains rivalries with regional and national clubs; some of these are keenly fought local derbies. Historically, Derby del Grana (or, less commonly, Derby dell'Enza)[nb 1] opponents Reggiana and Derby d'Emilia[nb 2] opponents Bologna have been the club's bitterest rivals. The ill-feeling with Reggiana comes from a traditional city rivalry between Parma and Reggio Emilia; Bologna and Parma are Emilia-Romagna's two most decorated clubs, winning the region's only domestic titles: 7 Serie A titles and 5 Coppe Italia. Two other local derbies are the Derby dei Ducati,[nb 3] which is contested with neighbours Modena, and the Derby del Ducato,[nb 4] which is played against Piacenza. Despite their relative obscurity, Lombardian side Cremonese and Tuscan outfit Carrarese, to Parma's north and south, respectively, are both seen as rivals too. Of these local derbies, only the Derby d'Emilia is played regularly because only Bologna play in Serie A alongside Parma.
Juventus is considered a great rival of Parma largely due to their recent duels, which include Parma's 1995 UEFA Cup victory, its first and third Coppa Italia triumphs, Supercoppa Italiana defeats in 1995 and 2002, and its 1995 domestic cup final defeat to The Old Lady. These six matches comprise nearly half of the fourteen major finals Parma has participated in. Ironically, Parma's colours have their origins in those Juventus wears, and the switch from white and black to a yellow and blue home kit in the late 1990s took place in order to distance and distinguish Parma from Juventus. Parma maintain keenly fought rivalries with Vicenza and Genoa.
In Italy, it is common for clubs to be twinned in an arrangement called gemellaggi. This is a practice uncommon elsewhere. Parma enjoy amicable relations with Empoli in an arrangement that dates back to a game played in foggy conditions in 1984 that ended in the Parma fans congratulating those of Empoli on their win when the full-time whistle was blown without the Azzurri fans' knowledge. Perhaps a more current bond is felt towards the fans of Sampdoria.
Ownership and finances
|Operating income||(€21.253M) (2012–13)|
|Net income||(€3.224M) (2012–13)|
|Total assets||€212.539M (2012–13)|
|Total equity||€23.255M (2012–13)|
|Parent||Eventi Sportivi S.p.A.|
Since January 2007, the club has been majority-owned by Tommaso Ghirardi, owner of mechanics firm La Leonessa S.p.A.. Enrico Bondi had previously been put in charge of selling the club after parent company Parmalat's financial crisis and sold it to Ghirardi for less than €3M. The club is a limited liability company that is wholly owned by parent company Eventi Sportivi S.p.A.. Ghirardi owns roughly 70% of Eventi Sportivi; Alberto Rossi and Alberto Volpi each bought 5% of Eventi Sportivi on 21 July 2011 for a combined €7.5M to reduce Ghirardi's ownership to that approximate figure. Other shareholders are Vice-President Diego Penocchio (who has a 5% personal shareholding and 5% through Ormis S.p.A., another mechanics company), Banca Monte Parma (less than 5%) and Marco Ferrari (5%). Ghirardi appoints five further directors, including Pietro Leonardi, to maintain a boardroom majority (six to five). In the first five years of Ghirardi's presidency (from January 2007 to January 2012), it was estimated his investment had reached €30M, alongside a further €13M in the club's parent company. The club is one of the members of the European Club Association, which was formed after the dissolution of the G-14, a smaller international group of Europe's most elite clubs of which Parma was not a part.
To improve the financial standing of the club, Parma hopes to eventually buy the Stadio Ennio Tardini from the relevant municipal authority. In September 2012, La Gazzetta dello Sport reported the club had the fourteenth highest annual salary bill in Italian football, paying €21.2M to 25 players, although these reported figures are generally underestimates, as they only include the basic salaries of the first-team squad; the club reported the figure to be €38.1M for the previous season (89% of non-transfer revenue; UEFA recommends this to be below 70%). From the 2010–11 season, Serie A clubs have collective television rights rather than individually negotiated rights for the first time since 1998–99, mimicking the world's most commercially successful league: the Premier League. The domestic rights to broadcast live matches for 2011–13 were sold for €1.748bn to Sky Italia and RAI, among others, and MP & Silva bought the worldwide rights for €181.5M for 2010–12. These figures resulted in higher broadcasting revenues for Parma, with larger clubs suffering from the centralisation of the selling of rights, although clubs do not receive an equal share and Parma's support, recent and historical results, and the city's size, count against them in the assessment of exact shares. The club has three offices: one at the Stadio Ennio Tardini, one at the Centro Sportivo di Collecchio and one in Shanghai.
- As of 05 July, 2014.
Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Out on loan
Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Players with contracts
Co-owned at other clubs
For information on Parma's youth teams, see Parma F.C. Academy.
For a list of club captains, see List of Parma F.C. players#Club captains.
For player records, including player awards, see Parma F.C. statistics and records.
- Board room
- President: Tommaso Ghirardi
- Managing director: Pietro Leonardi
- Technical director: Antonello Preiti
- Club secretary: Alessio Paini
- Team manager: Alessandro Melli
- Coaching staff
- Head coach: Roberto Donadoni
- Assistant coach: Luca Gotti
- Fitness coaches: Giovanni Andreini, Niccolò Prandelli
- Goalkeeping coach: Luca Bucci
- Technical coach: Mario Bortolazzi
- Youth team head coach: Fausto Pizzi
Parma has had numerous presidents over the course of its history; here is a complete list of them:
Below is a list of Parma managers since the end of the First World War until the present day.
Parma has won eight major titles in their history, all coming in a period of ten years between 1992 and 2002. These honours make it the tenth most successful team in Italian football history in terms of the number of major trophies won, the fourth most successful team in European competition, after Milan, Juventus and Inter, and, along with Milan, the only club in Italy to have won more international than domestic honours.
- Seconda Divisione:
- Winners (1): 1924–25[nb 6]
- Serie C:
- Derby del Grana translates to Grana Derby. Grana is a type of hard, mature cheese, of which Parmigiano-Reggiano, or Parmesan cheese, is an example. The cheese is named after the producing areas near Parma, Reggio Emilia, Modena and Bologna, all in Emilia-Romagna), and Mantova (in Lombardia), Italy. Under Italian law, only cheese produced in these provinces may be labelled "Parmigiano-Reggiano" and European law classifies the name as a protected designation of origin. Parmigiano is the Italian adjective for Parma. Reggiano is the Italian adjective for Reggio Emilia, Reggiana's home city. Derby dell'Enza translates to Enza Derby. The River Enza is an affluence of Italy's longest river, the Po, and forms the boundary of the provinces of Parma and Reggio Emilia.
- Derby d'Emilia would be translated to Emilia Derby. Emilia is a region that approximately corresponds to the western and north-eastern portions of today’s Emilia-Romagna. The region takes its name from the Via Aemilia, a Roman road in 187 BCE.
- Derby dei Ducati means Derby of the Duchies, the duchies in question being those of Modena and Reggio and Parma. These territories were competing and neighbouring duchies during the Renaissance.
- Derby del Ducato is the Italian equivalent of Derby of the Duchy. The Duchy of Parma was created in 1545 and became the unified Duchies of Parma and Piacenza in 1556.
- At the time, this was one of 3 parallel regional second tier divisions.
- At the time, this was one of 2 parallel regional second tier divisions.
- At the time, this was one of 13 parallel regional second tier divisions.
- At the time, this was one of 3 parallel regional third tier divisions.
- At the time, this was one of 2 parallel regional third tier divisions.
- At the time, this was one of 12 parallel regional third tier divisions.
- At the time, this was one of 9 parallel regional fourth tier divisions.
- Parma competed as a representative of Italy.
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Parma Football Club.|
- Official website (English) (Italian)
- Parma at Serie A (English) (Italian)
- Parma at Football Italia
- Parma at ESPN Soccernet