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People 'don't trust' Italian football, says corruption-tainted former Juventus chief

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People 'don't trust' Italian football, says corruption-tainted former Juventus chief

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Welcome to The Corner. For the first edition of 2017 we bring you a special programme. Euronews met up with Luciano Moggi, a former Juventus managing director and now a journalist. He is considered by many as ‘‘the puppet master of Italian football’‘, due to his involvement in the Calciopoli scandal that involved the rigging of football games by selecting favourable referees.

Cinzia Rizzi euronews sport
‘‘Ten years later, the shockwaves of the Calciopoli are still being felt. Are we ever going to see an end’ of this sad chapter in Italian sport?’‘

Luciana Moggi, former Juventus managing director
‘‘No, it’s tough, because the excuse for those who lose is always Calciopoli. Take Inter Milan, every time they lose a match they say ‘Ah, Calciopoli’.
The reason for this is that in 2006 they were 15 points adrift of Juventus, now they still are trailing. So, nothing has changed despite Calciopoli not existing anymore.
I think it’s something important but it’s hard to forget for the fans, because unfortunately Juventus’ supporters think one way and the other fans of other clubs think another way. And the teams who lose are the ones who complain.’‘

Cinzia Rizzi euronews sport
“You were defined as – and I quote the court documents: ‘‘the creator of an illicit system of manipulating the 2004-2005 [Italian] league games. He was controlling everything, he had total power and controlled the journalists, the TV and media’‘. What part of this is true?”

Luciana Moggi
“Indeed I was considered as Calciopoli’s creator, but they haven’t said yet where the frauds was. The fraud was in the mind of those who created and closed the whole inquiry. They said Juventus were winning because Moggi was helping Juventus, and this is not true. Juventus were winning because of their good players, that were better than the others. For Calciopoli to exist, they should have considered all the clubs, because football has to be watched at 360 degrees, not only considering one club and excluding all the others.”

Cinzia Rizzi euronews sport
‘‘Unfortunately Calciopoli is not the only scandal in the football world. Last year Fifa was upset by a storm, which brought about the suspension of the then President Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini, who was in charge of UEFA. What do you think about this?”

Luciana Moggi
‘‘Well, I think what wise people would think that the leaders of these organisations that rule football are ‘insignificant’ people. I wouldn’t like to say ‘‘dishonest’‘, but it’s not far from this definition.”

Cinzia Rizzi euronews sport
“Do you think that Gianni Infantino, who was elected president of Fifa last February, can change this, can clean up football and above all Fifa’s image?”

Luciana Moggi
“He’s trying to do it, for sure he’s different from his predecessors. He wants the best for football. His only fault is that he supports Inter Milan, if we can say this is a fault. But I really believe in Infantino, because he’s a person who has football’s best interest at heart, contrary to Blatter and Platini, who had something else close to their hearts…”

Cinzia Rizzi euronews sport
_“Until some years ago, big names, players but also coaches, were coming to Serie A to play or train. Today they prefer Spain, Germany, England, and also France. Why is this?” _

Luciana Moggi
“Because they don’t trust Italian football, this is clear. Not only great champions no longer come anymore, but even our best coaches go abroad. For instance Antonio Conte, Fabio Capello, Carlo Ancelotti. All our coaches, the best ones, left for the best European clubs. For now, only the ‘‘reserves’‘ come to Italy, the ones nobody else want. And this, for sure, is something which says a lot about Italian football”._

Cinzia Rizzi euronews sport
“Over the past few years, European football has become more ‘Asian’. There are several businessmen who come from Asia to invest in clubs, but also European players who move to Asia, in particular China. Why, what’s happening?”

Luciana Moggi
“They come to Italy to learn about football, they don’t bring ‘professors’ here to teach us how to play football, because they don’t know about it [football]. The fact that some players go to China and earn a yearly salary that they would need at least four years to get here, says a lot about this. We go over there to teach them football, they come over here just for the marketing, not to teach us football, otherwise they wouldn’t invite our coaches to China to train them.”

Cinzia Rizzi euronews sport
“You’re banned here but do you see yourself ever returning to the world of football, outside Italy?’‘

Luciana Moggi
“We’ll see. But I have to say something; I really enjoy being a journalist and columnist, because I give a lot of advice to coaches and I see that they read what I write really carefully. And then, If I make a mistake, well it’s not a big deal. On the contrary, working in a football club, if I make a mistake I pay the consequences. Therefore, all things considered, it’s much more fun being a journalist.”

Cinzia Rizzi
‘‘Luciana Moggi, thank you.’‘

Luciana Moggi
‘‘Thank you.’‘