Monday, September 11, 2006

Matarrese opens new chapter

Italian Football League chief Antonio Matarrese is optimistic that this summer’s scandals can be archived after the season started over the weekend.

“I think that everyone understood the lesson, there is the will to show that Italian football has changed,” Matarrese told Radio RAI.

The game was thrown into disarray last May when the match-fixing scandal erupted, one which led to numerous clubs being docked points and Juventus even being demoted to Serie B. Yet the new campaign finally kicked off on Friday night with a Serie B fixture and Serie A followed suit with Roma-Livorno.

“We started off in the right way,” added Matarrese. “Only time will tell if we were right or wrong, but we can’t afford to make any more mistakes. Any further false moves would be suicidal, there is tension inside the Lega because we want to prove that we deserve to be forgiven by the supporters and by public opinion. I believe that some changes have already taken place. The new season began with all clubs being placed on a level playing field.”

FIGC commissioner Guido Rossi – hired after the Italian Football Federation was placed into administration – is currently rewriting the sport’s rules, but Matarrese insists they were already in place.

“The problem was that someone did not respect the rules, Rossi now needs to work with the Lega to give new credibility to our movement,” he added. “One thing that needs to be done is to avoid that the individuals involved in the scandal continue working in football as if nothing happened. Francesco Borrelli [the FIGC Calciopoli investigator] is not enough to cancel the system, we need other men who know Italian football from the inside, that is the only way we can really start over.”


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