Just like the tales of the fictional Phoenix, Italian football team Juventus returned to the field shinning internationally, after qualifying for the final game of the UEFA Champions League. Juventus won the qualification, beating last season’s team Real Madrid, to play against another big Spanish team, Barcelona.
Juventus won the title twice in 1984/1985 and 1995/1996, but has since failed to win. The Italian team was in the lower ranks through 12 years, when its last tough game was played in the 2002/2003 season against AC Milan.
In the past 12 years, it has only made it to the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League, after being defeated in the champions group round. In the 2012/2013 championship, the team played until the quarterfinals but lost against Bayern Munich with a score of 2-0.
Juventus is the hope of Italy to take back its prestigious rank after all these years, where Inter won the last title in 2009/2010 season, five years ago. At that time, not a single Italian team won the quarterfinals. In the previous season in 2013/2014, Italian teams were absent in all the eighth rounds.
In the last UEFA European Championships, none of the Italian teams won the title. The last team to have won the championship during the old system was 16 years ago, when Parma won the title in 1998/1999. Although two Italian teams made it to the semi-finals this season in the Euro Championship after a long absence, they failed to qualify for the final games after Fiorentina lost against Seville. The other team, Napoli, also lost against Ukraine’s team, Dnepr in the semi final.
On the other side, the Italian national team, the Azzurris, exited the FIFA Club World Cup in 2010 and 2014 shamefully in the first round. In the first time, the team ranked last in the group of six after two ties and a win, with a score of only two points, against teams of Paraguay, Slovakia, and New Zealand. During the Brazil World Cup, the team came in third place of the group of four with a score of only three points, after a win and two losses. Even though the team qualified for the final game of the Euro Championship of 2012, Azzurri saw a very shameful defeat with four goals.
When it comes to football, the championship is going through huge financial crises, with Parma officially bankrupt after a judicial rule and after being unable to pay for the players’ salaries.
Financial crises are not only the outcome of a faulty investment or an aged idea in the Italian team, but also financial, administrative, and moral corruption. Juventus was one of the teams that have born the consequences of these crises since 2006. Nine points were deducted from the team’s points after a scandal at that time, in addition to banning it from playing in the Euro Championship.
The Italian football championship’s rank considerably declined on an international level, after a reputable rank as one of the championships with the most attractive teams. Revenues decreased, international interest shrank, and income from TV broadcast also declined.
After all of this, Juventus has a lot to achieve in the game against Barcelona. The team must get back its title and revive the spirit of the Italian football.