Juventus: Forever Italy’s Black & White Reflection

Posted on 18/11/2010

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The history of Juventus & the Italian national team are so entwined as to be almost inseparable. The peaks of both often mirror one another, with Italy’s moments of triumph always arriving when the squad is based around its most famous club. Indeed six of the top ten most capped Internationals have been at Juventus at some point of their careers.
The two main reasons for this trend are extremely simple. Firstly, Juventus is Italy’s most successful club by far. Secondly the club has a tradition of having a team & squad made up largely of home-grown players. The squad of 25 first-team players at the club contains no fewer than 17 Italians, including the naturalised Amauri.
Overall Juventus is the club that has contributed the most players to the Italian national team in history, with 132 Bianconeri players featuring in competitive games for Italy. They also boast a formidable 22 Italian World Cup winners, a record for any club in world football.
In addition to this, Zidane and Deschamps won the World Cup for France while playing at Juventus. The World Cup Final in 2006, between Italy and France, contained nine Juventus players. Two Juventus players, Salvatore “Toto” Schillaci and Paolo Rossi, won the Golden Boot as top scorer. These came at the 1990 and 1982 World Cups.
Now however is not a glory filled era for either side, & perhaps this is the best illustration of the direct effect Juventus has on the Italian National Team. Last season was one of the worst in the club’s illustrious history, & it comes as no surprise that this was reflected in Italy’s showing in South Africa. The worst showing by the Azzurri in a World Cup proved beyond doubt that the current Juventus & Italy teams were in need of a drastic overhaul.
Clearly with Andrea Agnelli, Beppe Marotta & Gigi Delneri Juventus have begun this new era in earnest, & Italy are doing much the same with former Bianconeri Cesare Prandelli, Ciro Ferrara & Roberto Baggio appointed to key positions within the new set-up put into place by the FIGC
A rebuilt Juventus was represented by its most inform players in this weeks friendly against Romania with Leonardo Bonucci, Alberto Aquilani & Fabio Quagliarella all featuring. The influence of Juventus on the Italian National Team remains as strong today as it ever was & with every winning team the country has produced containing Juventus players it is a trend that looks set to continue awhile yet.
Source: Il Tifosi
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