Atalanta B.C.

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Atalanta
AtalantaBC.svg
Full name Atalanta Bergamasca
Calcio S.p.A.
Nickname(s) La Dea (The Goddess)
Founded 8 October 1907; 108 years ago (1907-10-08)
Ground Stadio Atleti Azzurri d'Italia
Ground Capacity 26,562[1]
President Antonio Percassi
Head Coach Gian Piero Gasperini
League Serie A
2015–16 Serie A, 13th
Website Club home page
Current season

Atalanta Bergamasca Calcio, commonly known as just Atalanta, Atalanta Bergamo or the abbreviation Atalanta BC, is an Italian football club based in Bergamo, Lombardy. The club currently plays in Serie A, having gained the promotion from Serie B in 2010–11.

They are nicknamed the Nerazzurri and the Orobici. Atalanta play in blue-and-black vertically striped shirts, black shorts and black socks. The club stadium is the 26,638 seater Atleti Azzurri d'Italia.

In Italy, Atalanta is sometimes called Regina delle provinciali (queen of the provincial clubs) to mark the fact that the club is historically one of the most consistent among the non-metropolitan ones, having played 53 times in Serie A (11th overall for number of participations in the top division), 28 times in Serie B and only once in Serie C1.

The club won the Coppa Italia in 1963 and reached the Cup Winners' Cup semi-final in 1988, when it was still competing in Serie B. This is still the best ever performance by a non-first division club in a major UEFA competition (together with Cardiff City).[2] Atalanta also participated twice in the UEFA Cup, reaching the quarter-finals in 1990–91.

History[edit]

The club was founded in 1907. A football club had existed in Bergamo since 1904. Founded by wealthy Swiss immigrants, it was known as FC Bergamo. The rival Atalanta club grew out of a division between different sporting societies in the town. The name is taken from the female athlete of Greek mythology. The FIGC was unimpressed with the new club and did not officially recognize them until 1914. The current club is the result of a merger between Atalanta and a third team called Bergamasca. The first, black and white coloured and the second wearing a blue and white shirt, merged in 1924 as Atalanta Bergamasca di Ginnastica e Scherma 1907. The team moved to the site of the current ground, on the Viale Giulio Cesare, in 1928.

Atalanta joined the Italian league in 1929. The club first reached Serie A in 1937, but was relegated immediately. The club returned in 1940 and remained in Serie A until 1959; after a single season in Serie B, the club was promoted and lasted a further decade in Serie A before relegation in 1973 led to an uncertain period of promotion and relegation between the two levels.

The club achieved its highest position in 1948, finishing in fifth place. In 1981, the club fell into Serie C1, a blow which revitalised the club. The team returned to Serie B the next season and made it back to Serie A in 1984. The club's form in Serie A remains uncertain, as it was relegated in 1987, 1994, 1998, 2003, 2005 and 2010. After a change of ownership,[3] in 2011, Atalanta immediately came back to Serie A, where it has been ever since.

In terms of titles the club has won little, their sole silverware is the 1963 Coppa Italia. The club has had a few good runs in Europe, on several occasions being eliminated by the eventual winners.

Welsh club Merthyr Tydfil caused an upset in the 1987–88 European Cup Winners' Cup, beating Atalanta 2–1 in the first leg of their first round match at Penydarren Park. After winning the second leg 2–0 in Bergamo, Atalanta went on to reach the semi-finals, losing to eventual winners Mechelen of Belgium, but in the process becoming one of only two teams in the competition's history to reach the penultimate round while playing their football outside of the national top flight league. Oddly enough, the only other team to do so being Merthyr Tydfil's countrymen at Cardiff City.

Atalanta reached the UEFA Cup quarter-finals in the 1990–91 season, losing to local rivals Internazionale, who went on to beat another Italian side, Roma, in the final to win the tournament. The club never played European club competitions after 1991, although turned down the opportunity to play in the UEFA Intertoto Cup in 2001 after finishing in seventh place in Serie A, regional rivals of Brescia played the tournament instead, losing only in the final against French side Paris Saint-Germain.

In recent years, the club was relegated after the 2002–03, 2004–05 and 2009–10 seasons, but gained the promotion to Serie A after only one season every time.

In 2011–12, Atalanta was docked six points in the league table due to the outcomes of an Italian football scandal. Nevertheless, the club managed to secure another year in Serie A by gaining 52 points in 38 games (which is the club record, to date). The following year, for the same reasons, the club was docked two points in the league but avoided relegation reaching the 15th spot in the final table. In the 2013–14, Atalanta enjoyed another strong campaign, finishing in 11th place.

Atalanta struggled during the 2014–15 season despite some impressive results. At the beginning of the season, manager Stefano Colantuono committed his future to the club. On 4 March 2015, however, he was sacked after a poor run of form which left Atalanta only three points above the relegation zone. He was replaced by Edoardo Reja, who secured the club's status in Serie A for 2015–16, where Atalanta finished 13th.

Reputation[edit]

Over the years, Atalanta has earned the reputation of being a feeder team within the league, mostly due to their highly acclaimed and much vaunted youth policy which has enabled the club to produce a number of players who went on to bigger clubs. The team has also launched (or re-launched) the careers of many other players, however, either by loan or co-ownership, who came to the club and developed before moving on. Names such as the now disgraced Cristiano Doni and the likes of Andrea Consigli, Daniele Baselli, Giacomo Bonaventura, Roberto Donadoni, Massimo Donati, Fabrizio Ferron, Sergio Floccari, Maurizio Ganz, Filippo Inzaghi, Paolo Montero, Sergio Porrini, Giuseppe Savoldi, Marco Sportiello, Alessio Tacchinardi, Christian Vieri and Davide Zappacosta all came to notice while playing for Atalanta with players such as Germán Denis and Gianluigi Lentini rebooting their careers while on loan at the club.

Further proof of the club's youth credentials comes in the form of Gianpaolo Bellini. The defender came through the team's youth system, making his first team debut in Serie B on 11 April 1999 and has been with the club ever since, rising to become a regular first team choice and is now nominally current first team captain. He recently announced that his player career will come to an end with the completion of the 2015–16 season, meaning his career will have been played entirely with Atalanta, from youth to retirement.

Atalanta's youth system is also well known for being led by ex-players, including the current youth development head Walter Bonacina, who spend several years in Bergamo as a player.

Supporters[edit]

Atalanta's supporters are considered very loyal. When Atalanta plays at the Atleti Azzurri d'Italia, the supporters in the Curva Nord (North Curve) encourage the team with their chants during the entire match.

The biggest rivalry is with the neighbouring supporters of Brescia,[4] and there are strong rivalries also with supporters of Verona, Genoa, Fiorentina, Roma,[5] Lazio, Napoli, Milan, Internazionale, Torino; while there has been a long-standing friendship with Ternana, fans of the German Bundesliga club Eintracht Frankfurt, fans of the Austrian club Wacker Innsbruck and the Silver Tassie boys.

On special occasions, Atalanta supporters display a very large black and blue flag called Bandierù which covers the whole Curva Nord stand.

Honours[edit]

Players[edit]

Current squad[edit]

As of 31 August 2016[6]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1 Albania GK Etrit Berisha (on loan from Lazio)
2 Italy DF Guglielmo Stendardo
3 Brazil DF Rafael Tolói
4 Italy MF Roberto Gagliardini
5 Italy DF Andrea Masiello
6 Bosnia and Herzegovina DF Ervin Zukanović (on loan from Roma)
7 Italy MF Marco D'Alessandro
8 Italy MF Giulio Migliaccio
9 Serbia FW Aleksandar Pešić (on loan from Toulouse)
10 Argentina MF Alejandro Gómez
11 Switzerland MF Remo Freuler
13 Italy DF Mattia Caldara
17 Chile MF Carlos Carmona
19 Ivory Coast MF Franck Kessié
23 Italy DF Emanuele Suagher
No. Position Player
24 Italy DF Andrea Conti
25 France DF Abdoulay Konko
27 Slovenia MF Jasmin Kurtić
29 Italy FW Andrea Petagna
30 Italy GK Davide Bassi
37 Italy MF Leonardo Spinazzola (on loan from Juventus)
43 Italy FW Alberto Paloschi
47 Italy GK Stefano Mazzini
51 Chile FW Mauricio Pinilla
52 Ecuador MF Bryan Cabezas
57 Italy GK Marco Sportiello
77 Italy MF Cristian Raimondi
88 Italy MF Alberto Grassi (on loan from Napoli)
93 Senegal DF Boukary Dramé

Out on loan[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
Albania DF Berat Djimsiti (at Avellino)
Italy MF Salvatore Molina (at Avellino)
Italy DF Michele Canini (at Parma)
Italy MF Luca Valzania (at Cittadella)
Italy FW Guido Marilungo (at Empoli)
Albania MF Isnik Alimi (at Maceratese)
Italy FW Edoardo Ceria (at Spartak Trnava)
 

Youth team[edit]

Retired numbers[edit]

12 – Dedication to fans, in particularly for Pisani Curve ones
14 – Italy Federico Pisani, Forward (1991–97) – posthumous honour.
80 – Elio Corbani, radio journalist.[7]

Noted players[edit]

Presidential history[edit]

Atalanta have had several presidents over the course of their history. Some of them have been the main shareholder of the club, while others have been honorary presidents. The past president is Ivan Ruggeri, who was relieved of his duties after he suffered a stroke in January 2008, being replaced by his son Alessandro[8] that was named President of Atalanta in September 2008. Alessandro's father is unable to manage the team due to the consequences of the stroke.[9] In June 2010, after another relegation in Serie B, Alessandro Ruggeri sold his share of Atalanta to Antonio Percassi, who became the new President of Atalanta.[3]

 
Name Years
Enrico Luchsinger 1920–21
Antonio Gambirasi 1926–28
Pietro Capoferri 1928–30
Antonio Pesenti 1930–32
Emilio Santi 1932–35
Lamberto Sala 1935–38
Nardo Bertoncini 1938–44
Guerino Oprandi 1944–45
Daniele Turani 1945–64
Attilio Vicentini 1964–69
 
Name Years
Giacomo "Mino" Baracchi 1969–70
Achille Bortolotti 1970–74
Enzo Sensi 1974–75
Achille Bortolotti 1975–80
Cesare Bortolotti 1980–90
Achille Bortolotti 1990
Antonio Percassi 1990–94
Ivan Ruggeri 1994–08
Alessandro Ruggeri 2008–10
Antonio Percassi 2010–

Managerial history[edit]

Atalanta have had many managers and head coaches throughout their history, below is a chronological list of them from when Serie A was changed into a league format, from 1929–30 onwards.

 
Name Nationality Years
Cesare Lovati Italy 1923–27
Imre Payer Hungary 1927–29
Enrico Tirabassi Italy 1928–29
Luigi Cevenini Italy 1929–30
József Viola Hungary 1930–33
Imre Payer Hungary 1933
Angelo Mattea Italy 1933–35
Imre Payer Hungary 1935–36
Ottavio Barbieri Italy 1936–38
Géza Kertész Hungary 1938–39
Ivo Fiorentini Italy 1939–41
János Nehadoma Hungary 1941–46
Giuseppe Meazza Italy 1946
Luis Monti Italy 1946
Ivo Fiorentini Italy 1946–49
Alberto Citterio
Carlo Carcano
Italy
Italy
1949
Giovanni Varglien Italy 1949–51
Denis Charles Neville[10] England 1951–52
Carlo Ceresoli Italy 1952
Luigi Ferrero Italy 1952–54
Francesco Simonetti
Luigi Tentorio
Italy
Italy
1954
Luigi Bonizzoni Italy 1954–57
 
Name Nationality Years
Carlo Rigotti Italy 1957–58
Giuseppe Bonomi Italy 1958
Karl Adamek Austria 1958–59
Ferruccio Valcareggi Italy 1959–62
Paolo Tabanelli Italy 1962–63
Carlo Alberto Quario Italy 1963–64
Carlo Ceresoli Italy 1964
Héctor Puricelli Uruguay 1965–66
Stefano Angeleri Italy 1966–67
Paolo Tabanelli Italy 1967–68
Stefano Angeleri Italy 1968–69
Silvano Moro Italy 1969
Carlo Ceresoli Italy 1969
Corrado Viciani Italy 1969–70
Renato Gei Italy 1970
Giovan Battista Rota Italy 1970
Giulio Corsini Italy 1970–74
Heriberto Herrera Udrizar Paraguay 1974–75
Angelo Piccioli Italy 1975
Giancarlo Cadè Italy 1975–76
Gianfranco Leoncini Italy 1976
Giovan Battista Rota Italy 1976–80
Bruno Bolchi Italy 1980–81
Giulio Corsini Italy 1981
 
Name Nationality Years
Ottavio Bianchi Italy 1981 – 30 June 1983
Nedo Sonetti Italy 1 July 1983 – 30 June 1987
Emiliano Mondonico Italy 1 July 1987 – 30 June 1990
Pierluigi Frosio Italy 1990–91
Bruno Giorgi Italy 1991–92
Marcello Lippi Italy 1 July 1992 – 30 June 1993
Francesco Guidolin Italy 1 July 1993 – Sept 30, 1993
Andrea Valdinoci
Cesare Prandelli
Italy
Italy
1 Nov 1993 – 30 June 1994
Emiliano Mondonico Italy 1 July 1994 – 30 June 1998
Bortolo Mutti Italy 1 July 1998 – 30 June 1999
Giovanni Vavassori Italy 1 July 1999 – 30 Nov 2002
Giancarlo Finardi Italy 1 Dec 2002 – 30 June 2003
Andrea Mandorlini Italy 1 July 2003–05
Delio Rossi Italy 6 Dec 2004 – 30 June 2005
Stefano Colantuono Italy 1 July 2005 – 30 June 2007
Luigi Delneri Italy 1 July 2007 – 30 June 2009
Angelo Gregucci Italy 1 July 2009 – Sept 21, 2009
Antonio Conte Italy Sept 21, 2009 – 7 Jan 2010
Valter Bonacina (interim) Italy 7 Jan 2010 – 10 Jan 2010
Bortolo Mutti Italy 11 Jan 2010 – 10 June 2010
Stefano Colantuono Italy 14 June 2010 – 4 March 2015
Edoardo Reja Italy 4 March 2015 – 14 June 2016
Gian Piero Gasperini Italy 14 June 2016 –

References[edit]

External links[edit]