Israel football will have to wait a bit this coming week as The Sports Rabbi has taken off to Italy with his middle son Junior Mo for some Serie A action. Sure I will be covering the action from abroad, but I sure wished I was able to see some Israelis here, however, that will not be as the Lone Ranger Eran Zahavi formerly of Palermo made his way back to Israel and Maccabi Tel Aviv just in time to take care of Hapoel in the derby this past week.
Looking at Serie A there are plenty of derbies to be found. In Milan with AC & Inter, in Rome between Roma & Lazio, you also have Genoa where Sampdoria & Genoa battle for supremacy and of course Turin between Torino & Juventus.
In got me thinking what is really the biggest Derby in Italy? Lets take a look first at AC Milan & Inter. What could you possibly say against such a match. 80+ thousand people packing the Sab Siro, bragging rights on the line and passionate supporters on either side. Interestingly enough, there is not tha hatred that you may have in other derbies. I am not totally sure why, but it was interesting to see as we lined up at the Solo Inter store to meet Inter great Walter Samuel that there were a handful of people in AC Mian gear.
Sampdoria & Genoa is ok, but doesn’t have the luster of other great city rivalries. So well move right down to Roma & Lazio. Now there are two teams that certainly do not like each other and there are hard core supporters on either side of the stadium.
I have been fortunate enough to see both of these clubs up close and at the Olimpico in Rome to say tha I wouldn’t want to be near he ultras on either side of the stadium. That is true rivalry in the greatest sense of the word. The color, the atmosphere, what can be wrong in this classic! I think it has for to rank right up there with the best there is, the best there was and the best there will be.
Lastly, and perhaps most surprising of them all is that the Torino derby may be the most dynamic and earth shattering one there is. The reason being that the locals in Turin for the most part share a true hatred towards big brother and world power Juventus.
Before Juve built their brand new stadium, most games did not sell out, there were plenty of seats to be had. Nationally Juventus is the top team with the most supporters and internationally the claim is no less.
One can see what 30 Serie A championships and a slew of European hardware not to mention 700 goals in all European completions dating back to 1958. How could one not be in awe of this absolute machine of a team.
So in the case of Torino you could see why they might not be so happy about such an accomplished club. However, it is kind of interesting that the locals wouldn’t want to hold Juve high and be proud that such a monster is actually theirs.
What do you think of Turin? What Derby do you fancy?