Little Crotone comes to the Serie A


The last time the region of Calabria had a representative in the Serie A was in 1983 when after 3 seasons US Catanzaro was relegated and after that began its downward spiral towards the lower division which is playing to this day.This is not a story about Catanzaro which is Claudio Ranieri’s former club,but a story about its smaller neighbor which for the first time in its history has achieved promotion to the Serie A and became another fairytale of the 2015-16 season besides it isn’t well known outside of Italy and it will give the South Italian region of Calabria for the first time in more than 30 years a representative in the Serie A.Crotone is town in Calabria which has about 60000 inhabitants but it is one of the poorest in Italy with an unemployment rate at 31 percent which is one of the highest in the whole country which forces young people to leave the town for the much wealthier North.Meanwhile the town’s club FC Crotone which was founded in 1910 spent most of its history playing in lower divisions,until 2000 when under coach Antonello Cuccureddu for the first time in its history was promoted in the Serie B.However in the years that followed Crotone was bouncing between the Serie B and lower division until 2009 when they were under Francesco Moriero promoted back to the Serie B amd stayed they until the 2015-16 season.Last season Crotone barely avoided the relegation in the Lega Pro by a single point and after three seasons coach Massimo Drago was repleaced by their former player Ivan Juric who between 2001 and 2006 made 148 appearances for the club before making a switch to Genova where he in 2010 retired from playing.Crotone’s goal for the season was simple:avoid relegation from the Serie B.But nobody could imagine that Crotone would achieve a promotion to the Serie A for the first time in their history and become another football fairytale of the 2015-16 season.Crotone had a very rough start of the season when it was defeat 4-0 against Cagliari which was the favorite to win automatic promotion to the Serie A at matchday 1,but then made two huge runs in the season:the first lasted from matchday 2 in  mid-September to matchday 10 in late-October which saw the side collecting 21 points from possible 27 and it ended when they were defeated by Pescara 4-1 on matchday 11,the second run was much longer and it lasted from matchday 12 in early-November to matchday 23 in mid-January where they collected 30 from possible 36 points and it ended on matchday 24 when they were defeated by a single goal against Perugia,while also they defeated Cagliari in a rematch at home 3-1 on matchday 22 and Pescara on matchday 32 in mid-March.But the confirmation of promotion to the Serie A and probably one of the biggest dates in club’s history is the 29th of April when after a goal by Raffaele Paladino in the 44th minute which turned the match into a 1-1 draw with the already relegated Modena,Crotone achieved its first historic promotion to the Serie A,besides it comes from of the poorest places in Italy and besides that in the 25 years since the club was refounded under chairman Raffaele Vrenna and sporting director Beppe Ursino whose best move was the hiring of former player Ivan Juric operates under a shoestring budget but always finds a way how to keep the club float since stability in Italian football is very rare.Besides the hiring of Juric Crotone’s promotion wouldn’t be possible without the deals which Ursino made for the club under which Juric built a decent squad,from St.Pauli which plays in the 2.Bundesliga was brought under a loan Ante Budimir who in 36 appearances in the season scored 16 goals and who is compared to Juventus striker Mario Mandzukic,while in the defence there are Gianfranco Ferrari and Bruno Martella and the midfield has a crucial player in Adrian Stoian from Romania who signed last year a three-year contract at the club.Next season Crotone can look forward playing in the Serie A in their small Ezio Scida Stadium which only holds 10000 seats but the club can hope that they can survive the world of the Serie A for more than one season unlike Carpi and Frosinone who were relegated from the Serie A in the 2015-16 season,but Crotone wrote one of the football fairytale stories and it proved that in football everything is possible.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s