Roberto Boninsegna

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Roberto Boninsegna
Personal information
Full name Roberto Boninsegna
Date of birth (1943-11-13) 13 November 1943 (age 72)
Place of birth Mantua, Italy
Height 1.78 m (5 ft 10 in)
Playing position Striker
Youth career
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1963–1964 Prato 22 (1)
1964–1965 Potenza 32 (9)
1965–1966 Varese 28 (5)
1966–1969 Cagliari 83 (23)
1967 Chicago Mustangs (American tour) 9 (10)
1969–1976 Internazionale 197 (113)
1976–1979 Juventus 58 (22)
1979–1980 Verona 14 (3)
National team
1967–1974 Italy 22 (9)

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

† Appearances (goals)

Roberto Boninsegna (Italian pronunciation: [roˈbɛrto ˌbɔninˈseɲɲa] born 13 November 1943 in Mantua) is an Italian former football player, who mainly played as a forward. After retiring, he also worked as a football manager. As a player, he also represented the Italian national side at two World Cups, reaching the final in 1970.

As a player, Boninsegna was a powerful, agile, and acrobatic striker, who was known for his accurate finishing ability. He was a prolific goalscorer, who excelled in the air, despite not being particularly tall or imposing physically.[1] He was also gifted with pace, stamina, technical ability, opportunism, and outstanding consistency, which enabled him to become one of the top Italian forwards of his generation.[2] Because of his jumping ability in the air, and his power and accuracy with his head, the famous Italian sports journalist Gianni Brera gave him the nickname "Bonimba".[3] Despite his talent, he was criticised on occasion for being a selfish player, although he was also capable of creating chances for team mates.[4]

Playing career[edit]

Club career[edit]

He started his career in Serie B (the second tier of Italian professional football) with Prato in 1963–64 season. He transferred to FC Potenza, who was Serie B team in 1964–65 season. He also played for Varese in 1965–66 and Cagliari between 1966–1969. Boninsegna gained a status as an efficient striker with Internazionale Milano F.C. and Italian national football team in the 1970s. In Serie A, he totaled 171 goals in 281 games, and was top goalscorer in Italy during the 1970-71 and 1971-72 Serie A seasons, also winning the 1970-71 Serie A title with Inter. He transferred to Juventus F.C. in 1976 in exchange for Pietro Anastasi,[1] and he played 3 seasons for the club, winning two Serie A titles, a Coppa Italia, and an UEFA Cup. He finished his career at Verona at the end of the 1979–80 season.

International career[edit]

Boninsegna made his debut for Italy on the 18th November 1967, in an away UEFA Euro 1968 qualifying match against Switzerland, which ended 2-2, although he was not called up for the final tournament, which Italy ended up winning on home soil. With the national side, he took part in two World Cups, the first in 1970, and the second in 1974. In total, he managed 9 goals for Italy in 22 appearances.

Boninsegna was a member of the Italian side that reached the final of the 1970 World Cup in Mexico, scoring two goals throughout the tournament. In the epic semi-final match against West-Germany, he scored a goal, and later set up Gianni Rivera's match-winning goal in extra time, which allowed Italy to advance to the final after a 4-3 victory. He scored Italy's only goal (though at the time it was an important equaliser) in the 1970 FIFA World Cup final against Brazil, which Italy ultimately lost 4–1.

Career statistics[edit]

Season Club League
Competition Games Goals
1963–64 Prato Lega Calcio Serie B 22 1
1964–65 Potenza Lega Calcio Serie B 32 9
1965–66 Varese Serie A 28 5
1966–67 Cagliari Serie A 34 9
summer 1967 Chicago Mustangs United Soccer Association 9 10
1967–68 Cagliari Serie A 19 5
1968–69 Serie A 30 9
1969–70 Internazionale Serie A 30 13
1970–71 Serie A 28 24
1971–72 Serie A 28 22
1972–73 Serie A 27 12
1973–74 Serie A 29 23
1974–75 Serie A 29 9
1975–76 Serie A 26 10
1976–77 Juventus Serie A 29 10
1977–78 Serie A 21 10
1978–79 Serie A 8 2
1979–80 Verona Lega Calcio Serie B 14 3
Total Lega Calcio Serie A 375 173
Total with clubs 443 186
Total career in top level (plus Italy NT) 465 195
0.42 goal per game






External links[edit]


  1. ^ a b "BONINSEGNA, Roberto Enciclopedia dello Sport (2002)". Retrieved 23 December 2014. 
  2. ^ "Roberto Boninsegna". Retrieved 23 December 2014. 
  3. ^ "“Ecco perchè Brera mi ha chiamato Bonimba”". Retrieved 23 December 2014. 
  4. ^ "Boninsegna festeggia 70 anni: "Solo Inter, ma quanti tradimenti"". Retrieved 23 December 2014. 
  5. ^ Roberto Di Maggio; Davide Rota (4 June 2015). "Italy - Coppa Italia Top Scorers". RSSSF. Retrieved 15 June 2015. 
Sporting positions
Preceded by
Gigi Riva
Serie A Top Scorer
1970–71 & 1971–72
Succeeded by
Paolo Pulici
Gianni Rivera
Giuseppe Savoldi