An Open Letter- What Juventus Means to Me (1 Viewer)

CR 7

Senior Member
Sep 16, 2003
In light of the recent events that have taken place with our team, I thought I would take just a moment of your time to convey my emotions, feelings, and hope for the future of a club that has been near and dear to my heart for 30 years, and that team is Juventus.

Now, I don't claim, nor will ever claim, that I am the all-knowing, omnipotent presence when it comes to Juventus. Unlike some people, I can't recite every transaction, recall every goal or fortunate (or unfortunate) refereeing decision that has taken place within the last 30 years.

I can't even sit here and tell you that this squad, in terms of sport, have been the foremost and most prevelant thought in my mind. Being where I am from, there are many, many other sporting distractions that take place that can quite honestly spread you too thin.

However, I would like to share with you some of my most poignant moments as a Juventino, and they have nothing to do with any trophies or championships won, or any scandals. This is something that I have never really shared in full detail with anyone here, but in light of recent events, I felt that now is the time.

Its 1976, and I am seven years old. A seven year old boy in 1976 has many distractions during that time. Mine were little league baseball, KISS, my Tyco race track set, and my Pet Rock.

One day, my Nonna, fresh from one of her recent excursions to the Motherland, brings me back a replica Juventus Jersey, and asks me to put it on. My response was, "But Nonna, I look like a Zebra!!!", which of course, ellicits laughs from everyone in the room. What I didn't realize then was that a torch was being passed on, from My Great-Grandfather, to My Grandmother and Grandfather, To my Mother, and now to me. I was to be the next in a long line of Juventini. During that time, my only knowledge of Football (Soccer), was that a whole bunch of news was being made about some guy from Brazil who was supposed to be really good, was coming to play in New York. That guy was Pele. After my grandparents left the house, I asked my mom what this shirt was all about. She told me that it was her favorite Soccer team from back home, and that her family have been fans of this team for over 50 years. Well, I thought, since I adored (and still adore), my Mom, if Mommy loves this team, then so will I. That is how I became a Juventino.

My 2nd trip to Italy took place in 1978, during the summertime, so unfortunately, I didn't have the opportunity to watch them play. However, I did come back with some really cool stuff, such as a stuffed Juventus Zebra, a cloth banner announcing their scudetto championship from 1978, a Pannini sticker book, and that table football game that has the cloth pitch, where you move the players around and kick the ball that seems to be as big as the players themselves, and a replica scale model Niki Lauda F1 Ferrari.

My 3rd trip to Italy was in the springtime of 1987, and although I didn't get a chance to watch them play, seeing as how I was in Rome for that time, I did get to cause a near riot at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome. It was during a Roma-Pisa match, back when Pisa was known form more than just their leaning tower. The match itself was boring, but I inadvertently created some fireworks. During the match, they gave match updates on the scoreboard, and I can't remember who Juve was playing, but they showed an update that Juve was losing 0-1. I got up and screamed, in English, mind you "What the Fuck!!! Come on Juve!!". Ooops. Despite my near fluent Italian, the people around me (with teh exception of my cousins, their girlfriends, and some chick I picked up at a club the night before), realized 2 things that were not in my favor. #1) I was a Juventino, and #2) I was an American. My cousin tells me "You're going to get us killed". Well, the taunts and the name calling started (no piss balloons, thankfully). I let it go. Well, 10 minutes later, Juve tied the score, and I stood up and threw my hands in the air in jubilation. I guess you just never learn sometimes. Well, here come the insults, and ice being thrown in my direction. Fine I said, I guess I had it coming. Anyway, as the Roma-Pisa match was drawing to a close (Roma had won 1-0 on a penalty kick), we start to leave our seats and move up the aisle, someone decides to grab my shirt and tell me "Juve Merda!!". So, in English, I tell the guy "Tell your girlfriend I'm sorry I left my boxer shorts at her place last night, and I'll be back later after you leave to pick them up." Well, little did I know that her Girlfriend understood English. Suffice it to say, you never know how fast you can run when you are being chased by an Angry Italian guy, his brothers, father,Stadium Security, and the Girlfriends brother. :D

My last story happened just 3 years ago, when Juventus came to America. I had the incredible opportunity to not only see my team play Barcelona in person in Boston, but to actually sit there and watch them train at Brown University in Rhode Island, no farther than 25 feet away from me. I honestly can't tell you the joy and elation I felt seeing Marcello Lippi walk onto the training field, followed by Alex, Buffon, Nedved, Zambo, Davids, Trez, and the rest. All I could do was sit there in the stands and cry. I cried during the whole training session, while trying to aim my camera and take pictures. The people around me couldn't understand why I was crying, and as my wife tried to explain, I felt a hand on my shoulder, and it was an old man and his grandson. I looked at him, and he told me "I know, I know." When the training was over, we finally got to meet the players and have our pictures taken and sign autographs. When I finally met Alex, and he signed my hat and jersey, all I could do, with my tear stained face, was look at him and say "Thank You". Those two simple words best defined what he, as a player, and Juve, as a team, truly meant to me at that time. He smiled, and in his best English, said "You're Welcome". Then I shook the man's hand. Stupid me, I totally forgot to get a picture with him, and although at the time I was one of his biggest critics, only recently do I realize just how stupid of a human being I was for doing so. The pictures of the training session and match are somewhere, buried deep in the Multimedia section of the forum, for your viewing pleasure.

So, where does this team go now?? What direction does it take??

To me, although I truly wish that it wasn't under these circumstances, they are heading in the right direction. Hopefully, the days of signing overpriced, overated, and over the hill mercenaries are a thing of the past, and we can enjoy a team with players who wear their affection for the club on their sleeves, and they will be players that we can watch struggle early in their youth, mature into good players, and good people, and thank them for their long service to the club once they decide to hang up their boots once and for all.

This is the Juventus that I want to see for the now and for the future, and when the time comes that I have a child, I will be the one to buy him/her a Juve jersey, so that he/she too can complain to me that they "Look like a Zebra".

Oh my little one, when you are older, you will truly understands what it means to be a Juventino. And you won't look like a Zebra, for those are the most beautiful colors of the most beautiful team of the most beautiful sport that you could ever have, and you will be joining a long litany of Juventus faithful from 5 generations who, although on the surface, haven't always showed their love for their team on the surface, and have even neglected them at times, will always, always, always, have this team in their hearts, until the day they die.

Ieri, Oggi, Domani, Sempre Juve.


Sep 23, 2003
Cheers, Sergio. :pint: It's fan stories like this that make me proud to have fellow juventini like you.
May 20, 2006
All of us have a similar story in our hearts. I think Juventus FC fans love their club like no other fans... its just something different. I can describe it as... Juventino, not anti Milanista or Interista...with greatest of respects for our opponents - the better they are, the greater we are.

CR 7

Senior Member
Sep 16, 2003
Thank you all for the positive feedback.

Its too bad that it takes something like this to find out what this squad means to me.

I fanyone else has any stories on how they became a Juventus Supporter, by all means, post it here.

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