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Lega Pro Special – Tension Rising In Season’s Final Stages

A fabulously entertaining season in Italy’s third and fourth tiers enters its final few weeks of competition and for many clubs there is still everything to play for.

Vigor Lamezia within reach of the most unlikely title

Vigor Lamezia within reach of the most unlikely title in Lega Pro 2B


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Could Juventus’ 18-game unbeaten streak be holding them back?

Juventus currently hold the longest unbeaten streak in Europe’s top 5 leagues. The bianconeri have gone 18 games without losing now and have made some dramatic comebacks along the way. Questions still remain though regarding whether or not they have what it takes to win the league.

Alessandro Matri: desperate for release

Alessandro Matri: desperate for release


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Lega Pro Review – La Gazzetta Dello Sport Recognises The Next Generation of Players

Steve Mitchell returns with a round up of the biggest stories in the Italian 3rd and 4th tiers. This week he looks at some of the leagues’ high-flying youngsters, a player suspected of robbing petrol stations and Pro Vercelli’s impressive rise into the play-offs.

Ternana players celebrate during their 3-0 demolition of Viareggio

Ternana players celebrate during their 3-0 demolition of Viareggio (image from TernanaCalcio.com)

The most famous sports daily newspaper in Italy, La Gazzetta Dello Sport has thrown its considerable weight behind the lower leagues this season in an attempt to single out the most promising young talent in the peninsula. For the 2011/12 campaign, the celebrated pink broadsheet is running two competitions the Premio Cestani to find the best young player in Lega Pro born after 1990 and the Premio Laudano which recognises the top young marksman in the third and fourth tiers and applies to those players in the same age category.
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Lega Pro Review – Taranto Are Cruising, This Is The Season So Far

Sadly, James Richardson was too busy for us at The Football Express. So we’ve got the next best thing, Lega Pro expert, Steve Mitchell to provide us with a round-up of the season so far in the Italian third and fourth tiers. If you’ve missed it so far, this will get you right back up to speed in no time at all.

After 1412 games, 1676 goals and 23 managerial changes, Italy’s third and fourth tiers went into their winter break. Congratulations go out to Ternana, Siracusa, Casale and Perugia who were crowned winter champions of their respective divisions.

The snow has thawed. The Lega Pro action will get under way again on Friday evening.

The snow has thawed. The Lega Pro action will get under way again on Friday evening.


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Lega Pro Review – Jeepers Keepers as Spadavecchia Gets 3 Year Ban

They say that a week is a long time in politics, well two weeks in Italian lower league football feels like an eternity. “Wow”, I hear you say, “is it really two weeks since we had our fix of Lega Pro on these esteemed pages!”

Taranto's fans light up the night sky

Taranto's fans light up the night sky

So what’s been happening since we last met?

The big story to breakĀ  has been the suspension of Andria Bat goalkeeper Vitangelo Spadavecchia. The big shot stopper was implicated as one of the main protagonists in match fixing allegations surrounding a Sorrento v Juve Stabia game dating back to April 2009 when he was custodian for the Rossoneri. The federal prosecutor when reviewing the case, asked for a six point penalty to be inflicted on the team from Campania, in the end they received a two point deduction but Spadavecchia was banned from the game for three and a half years.
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Lega Pro Review – Week 3

Match-Day three in Italy’s third and fourth tiers produced some dramatic action and if rumours are to be believed, we could be about to have our first high-profile managerial casualty of the new campaign.

Avellino's Giovanni Bucaro is facing the sack, imminently

Avellino's Giovanni Bucaro is facing the sack, imminently

In C1A Carpi are flying high and are yet to concede a goal this season. Lumezzane became their latest victims, thumped 3-0 at the Stadio Cabassi courtesy of goals from Francesco Potenza, Marco Perini and Alessandro Cesca. Taranto have turned a minus one deficit at the start of the campaign into plus eight at the end of week three. On Sunday David Dionigi’s men entertained Pavia and after Angelo Antonazzo’s comical own goal put the visitors in front on 24 minutes, the first real questions about the Rossoblu‘s title aspirations were asked. Two minutes after the break, Lucas Chiaretti levelled the scores and in the third minute of added on time, Nicola Russo grabbed a dramatic winner for Dionigi’s side.

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Lega Pro Review – Week 2

Just like the opening week of the Lega Pro season, the weather had a major impact on the second round of fixtures only this time it wasn’t the rain that was the problem, it was the debilitating heat that has engulfed the peninsula over the past seven days.

The sweltering heat and intense match action was all a bit too much for Sarri

The sweltering heat and intense match action was all a bit too much for Sarri

In C1A, Sorrento coach Maurizio Sarri was so concerned with the temperature that he asked if the game against Pavia could be switched to a later kick-off time. The request fell on deaf ears and by 3pm on Sunday afternoon, pitch-side temperatures at the Stadio Campo Italia had soared to an incredible 50 degrees Celsius. Despite the heat, the players put on an excellent display, the match finished 2-2 with Ciro Ginestra and Andrej Galibnov scoring for the hosts andĀ  Filippo Falco and Andrea D’errico replying for the visitors. Ginestra should have ensured all three points for Sarri’s side but he missed a penalty on the stroke of half-time.
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