Venezia F.C.

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Venezia F.C..png
Full name Venezia Football Club S.r.l.
Nickname(s) Arancioneroverdi (Orange-Black-Greens)
Lagunari (Lagoonal Ones)
Leoni Alati (Winged Lions)
Founded 1907; 110 years ago (1907) (as Venezia Foot Ball Club)
2005; 12 years ago (2005) (as SSC Venezia)
2009; 8 years ago (2009) (as FBC Unione Venezia)
2015; 2 years ago (2015) (as Venezia FC)
Ground Stadio Pierluigi Penzo,
Sant'Elena, Venice, Italy
Ground Capacity 7,450
Chairman Joe Tacopina
Manager Filippo Inzaghi
League Serie B
2016–17 Lega Pro/B, 1st (promoted)
Website Club website

Venezia Football Club S.r.l. commonly referred to as Venezia, is an Italian football club from Venice that is playing in Serie B, the Italian second division.

Founded by a merger in 1907, Venezia have spent a large part of their history in Serie A and Serie B, the top two divisions in Italy.

Venezia won the Coppa Italia in 1941.


Venezia's current home stadium, the Pierluigi Penzo, is the second-oldest stadium in Italy (the oldest being Genoa's Stadio Luigi Ferraris).


It is a multi-use stadium in Venice, Italy. It is the largest sports facility in Venice. The stadium was first opened in 1913 and takes its name from World War I pilot Pierluigi Penzo.

Originally constructed from wood, the stadium was largely upgraded with a concrete main stand in the 1920s and further improvements were made in the decades that followed. The record attendance of 26,000 was for a 1966 Serie A match against A.C. Milan.

On September 11, 1970 a tornado hit Venice and caused extensive damage to the stadium. Due to the club's decline the stadium was only partially reinstated, and the capacity was reduced to just over 5,000. The club rose back up to Serie A in 1998 and additional makeshift stands were added, bringing capacity back up to 13,400, but it has since been reduced again to the current capacity of 7,450.

The stadium is notable as it is primarily accessible by boat.


The club was founded as Venezia Foot Ball Club on 14 December 1907,[1] by members of two local sports clubs coming together; Palestra Marziale and Costantino Reyer. It was originally based at Campo San Bartolomeo in the city of Venice. Fifteen men including the first president Davide Fano were involved in the club's founding;.[1] In 1919, the name was translated into Italian as Associazione Calcio Venezia.

A closeup of Valentino Mazzola.

The most notable trophy success in Venezia's history is winning the Coppa Italia during the 1940–41 season. The Cup-winning Venezia team included some of the players who went on to form the Torino F.C. side of the 1940s who died in the Superga air disaster in 1949, such as Ezio Loik and Valentino Mazzola.

In 1941–42, Venezia earned its highest ever Serie A position, finishing in third place in the league.

A.C. Venezia 1907[edit]

In the summer 1990,[citation needed] the club was renamed Associazione Calcio Venezia 1907.

Venezia has spent the majority of its history in Serie A and Serie B, Italy's two top divisions. The club was last relegated from Serie A in 2002. This last season in Serie A began a period of decline for the club. Frustrated with the team and the inability to agree on plans for a larger stadium with the local council, then president Maurizio Zamparini decided to purchase U.S. Città di Palermo, and he took with him a large portion of the squad.

Álvaro Recoba played for Venezia.

Notable recent former players include Álvaro Recoba, Filippo Maniero and Christian Vieri.

In 2002 the club was relegated to Serie B and declared insolvent because of bankruptcy.[2][better source needed]

S.S.C. Venezia[edit]

In the summer 2005 the club was refounded as Società Sportiva Calcio Venezia and was admitted in Serie C2 due to Lodo Petrucci.

At the end of the 2008–09 Lega Pro Prima Divisione season, the club was declared bankrupt.

Foot Ball Club Unione Venezia[edit]

After the club's second bankruptcy, the club was re-founded as Foot Ball Club Unione Venezia, and was admitted to Serie D – the top level non-professional league in Italian football.

in 2011–12, Venezia won the Scudetto Dilettanti.

Venezia Football Club[edit]

After the club's third bankruptcy, the club was re-founded as Venezia F.C. S.r.l.d., and was admitted to Serie D for the 2015–16 season.

In October 2015, New York lawyer Joe Tacopina and a group of American investors announced the purchase of Venezia.[3] Tacopina was previously the President of Bologna and is also the former Vice President and minority investor in A.S. Roma.[citation needed]

In Tacopina's first season, Venezia earned promotion to Lega Pro.

On 7 June 2016, Filippo Inzaghi was hired as the new coach of club.[4] On 19 April 2017, Venezia managed to beat Parma to top spot in Lega Pro and eventually gaining a promotion to Serie B.[5]

Joe Tacopina Era and Serie B[edit]

For a man who has previously legally represented the likes of Maroon 5, Jay-Z and former New York Yankees superstar Alex Rodriguez, famous celebrity lawyer Joe Tacopina took on his toughest case in bringing broken Venezia back to the top. Tacopina, who is based in New York, inherited his love for the game from his parents, who were Italian immigrants.


His aim of taking the club back to the top had already been completed once and his experience in Italian football was well renowned, which proved to be good reading for Venezia’s supporters. He bought the club only 20 days after leaving Bologna, after taking the club northerners to Serie A. Ideally, he would still be there had it not been for a rift with Canadian investor Joey Saputo, and he was off just 11 months after taking up the project, leaving with his reputation intact having quadrupled the club’s valuation in that period. Prior to that, he was on the board of directors at Roma, which became the first foreign-owned club in Serie A in 2011.

Tacopina envisions Venezia becoming a global brand; another grand international representation of calcio on the foreign scene. This was by far his most comprehensive – some would say delicate – project, and so far in the years that he has been at the club, he has done a commendable job.

One of his major coups at the club was that of Sporting Director Giorgio Perinetti, a well-travelled veteran with previous experience at the top of the pile with the likes or Roma, Juventus and a Diego Maradona-inspired Napoli. His work is famous all over the country, and it's currently paying its dividends for the national team and Torino as he was the man who discovered and signed hitman Andrea Belotti for Palermo.

Perinetti did not have much experience in the lower leagues after leading teams at the top, so his role as sporting director would have been much harder than he thought. It was difficult to find players at that level, to kickstart their careers in the fourth division of Italian football, but this was where his experience and knowledge, earned over a career that spanned 43 years, came to the fore His first major deal came with the appointment of manager Paolo Favaretto, who, unlike Perinetti, was experienced in managing at this level.

Within weeks of Tacopina's takeover and Perinetti's appointment, Venezia had 21 players on its books. A key signing was 36 year old captain Evans Soligo, a man born on the Venetian islands and the only player in the squad to have been at the club when they were playing in Serie A. Former AC Milan and Juventus icon, Filippo Inzaghi was appointed manager. A year later they were celebrating promotion to Serie C.

Filippo Inzaghi in 2012.

Inzaghi’s appointment was a shock to most. Inzaghi’s only previous managerial experience was an underwhelming stint at AC Milan, where they finished 10th in Serie A. Inzaghi said his ambition of being part of the Venezia revolution.

Tacopina opened up Venezia's chequebook to bring in experienced names such as Italian forward Nicola Ferrari and 34-year-old Spaniard Alexandre Geijo. Among other signings were former Italy youth international Simone Bentivoglio and Vittorio Fabris.

The Inzaghi era started off well – as it needed to – in the complexity of the Lega Pro. If you are unfamiliar with how the league works, there are 60 teams in this division split across three groups of 20 each, with the highest finisher in each group gaining one of three automatic spots in Serie B. If a team finishes below first, they play a long and convoluted playoff from which only one team gains promotion.

Within six weeks of taking over, Venezia had sold more than a thousand club shirts – a huge increase on the handful they sold in the year before he took over. His care of the club has attracted larger attendances at games with average figures being at their highest since they last played in Serie A.

All this continues to grow, just as his and the fans’ dreams of visiting a stadium that they themselves own. Only Juventus, Udinese and Sassuolo own their grounds, but within the next five years, Tacopina hopes to host Serie A games at a venue that can hold up to 25,000 supporters as they look to relive the pre-World War II glory days.

On the pitch, Inzaghi’s aggression and emotion on the touchline inspired the side as they looked hard to defeat. They’re most impressive run was a 10-game spell, spread over three months, where they won nine and drew just once, which gave them an edge over their rivals at the top, including another fallen giant in Parma.

Venezia ended the 2016/17 season with 80 points, having won 23 of their 38 games, losing just four and drawing 11 as they were 10 points clear of Parma at the top of the league, earning promotion as champions of their group. The promotion they sealed against Fano also turned out to be the perfect gift for birthday boy Joe Tacopina, whose time and effort into the club deserved such reward.

They also won another trophy in the 2016/17 season – highlighting Inzaghi’s improvement and calibre in management – in the Copa Italia Lega Pro, a knockout competition for the 60 Lega Pro sides. In unconvincing fashion, they beat their promotion rivals Reggiana and Padova on the way before topping Matera in a two-legged final, winning the first leg at home 3–1 and losing the second leg three days later 1–0 to seal a memorable league and cup double.

Everyone in Venice now recognises the owner, with his name continuously chanted whenever he’s spotted on the island. His unmatched desire, along with Inzaghi and Perinetti’s cunning plans, makes anything possible for the club, and he is looking to the future as much as he is trying to make good of the present.

The club’s senior side visited the United States to play friendlies at the start of the 2017/18 season, while at the same time staff looked to the American market to pick up some bright young players, with trials in Tacopina's native New York being heavily promoted.

Tacopina’s other major off-field success has seen a rise in Venezia’s social media popularity. Few Italian clubs at that level consistently maintain their accounts, but Venezia do it well on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter – the latter of which is maintained in Italian as well as English.

In just two years, Venezia rose from the dead and are just a division below the elite. A task which looked impossible half a decade ago is in touching distance of becoming a reality. It will be very difficult to find an owner as passionate and committed as Joe Tacopina anywhere in the world.

In the summer at the start of the 2017/18 season, in preparation for their fresh start in Serie B, Venezia have conducted shrewd business in the transfer market securing the loan deals of promising players from Juventus and Milan.[6]

Current squad[edit]

As of 26 September 2017

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

No. Position Player
1 Italy GK Emil Audero (on loan from Juventus)
3 Italy DF Matteo Bruscagin
4 Slovenia MF Siniša Anđelković
5 Slovenia MF Leo Štulac
6 Italy DF Maurizio Domizzi
7 Italy MF Simone Bentivoglio
8 Italy MF Evans Soligo
9 Italy FW Gianmarco Zigoni (on loan from Milan)
10 Italy FW Gianni Fabiano
11 Italy FW Stefano Moreo
12 Italy GK Guglielmo Vicario
13 Italy DF Marco Modolo
14 Italy DF Marco Pinato
17 Italy FW Davide Marsura
No. Position Player
18 Romania MF Sergiu Suciu
19 Switzerland FW Álex Geijo
21 Slovenia FW Jan Mlakar (on loan from Fiorentina)
22 Italy GK Danilo Russo
23 Italy MF Marcello Falzerano
24 Italy MF Vittorio Fabris
25 Italy DF Francesco Cernuto
26 Italy DF Agostino Garofalo
27 Italy DF Giuseppe Zampano
30 Italy MF Francesco Signori
31 Italy DF Cristiano Del Grosso
32 Italy GK Roberto Barlocco
33 Italy GK Pier Graziano Gori

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
Italy GK Davide Facchin (at Reggiana)
Italy DF Luigi Luciani (at Santarcangelo)
Italy DF Paolo Pellicanò (at AlbinoLeffe)
Italy MF Alberto Acquadro (at Triestina)
No. Position Player
Italy MF Alex Pederzoli (at Piacenza)
Italy FW Giuseppe Caccavallo (at Cosenza)
Italy FW Samuele Chicchiarelli (at Viareggio 2014)
Italy FW Loris Tortori (at Viterbese)

Notable former players[edit]

Colours, badge and nicknames[edit]

Venezia's original kit.

Originally Venezia's colours were blue and red and the shirt features halves in those colours, the kit was very similar to that of Genoa.[7] However just a year after the club founded, it changed colours to black and green in 1908.[7]

1963–64 Venezia with its historical black and green kit

Much later, in 1987 when the club merged with a local side Associazione Calcio Mestre from Mestre who wore orange and black,[8] orange would also become one of Venezia's official colours, giving them the nickname arancioneroverdi ("orange-black-greens").[9] Venezia's colours and kit are very distinctive; the shirt, shorts and socks are usually black with the shirt having a green and orange trim.

The symbol of the Venetian club is a winged-lion (see Lion of Venice), commonly mistaken for a griffin. The golden winged-lion is the official symbol carries by the city of province of Venice;[10] the symbol has led to one of the club's most popular nicknames in the form of leoni alati ("winged-lions").[9]

As the club has been renamed numerous times during its history, the badge has also changed several times; the most common one features the golden winged lion, along with the green and orange club colours with a golden border.[11] As the city of Venice is situated on the Venetian Lagoon, the club is also nicknamed lagunari ("Lagoonal ones").[12]



Venezia receives the 1940–41 Coppa Italia

Coppa Italia:

  • Winners (1): 1940–41

Serie B:

  • Champions (2): 1960–61; 1965–66
  • Runners-up (3): 1938–39; 1948–49; 1997–98
  • Promoted (1): 2000–01

Serie C / Serie C1:

  • Champions (3): 1935–36; 1955–56; 2016–17
  • Runners-up (1): 1990–91

Coppa Italia Lega Pro

Serie C2:

  • Champions (1): 2005–06
  • Runners-up (1): 1987–88

Serie D:

  • Scudetto Dilettanti: Winners 1: 2011–12
  • Winners (2): 1982–83, 2011–12
  • Runners-up (1): 1978–79


  1. ^ a b "La Storia del Venezia". 24 June 2007. 
  2. ^ 2001–02 Serie A#League table
  3. ^ US lawyer Joe Tacopina buys Italian club Venezia
  4. ^ "Ufficiale: Pippo Inzaghi allenatore del Venezia". Sport Mediaset (in Italian). 7 June 2016. Retrieved 7 June 2016. 
  5. ^ "THE REBIRTH OF VENEZIA FC". 19 Apr 2017. 
  7. ^ a b "Storia". Venezia Calcio. 24 June 2007. 
  8. ^ "Italian Ultras Scenedate=29 June 2007". View from the Terrace. 
  9. ^ a b "SSC Venezia Information". 24 June 2007. 
  10. ^ "Stemma Provincia di Venezia". Comuni-Italiani. 24 June 2007. 
  11. ^ "SSC Venezia". 24 June 2007. 
  12. ^ "La presunta combine Genova-Venezia Preziosi: "Mai fatto quella chiamata"". 24 June 2007. 
  13. ^

External links[edit]