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The Serie A Format
The Serie A football season begins in August and concludes in May of the following year, and sees twenty professional football clubs competing for the championship title. During the first half of the season, every club plays one match against every other. Then, during the second half of the season, every team plays the same opponents once again, in the same order as before, but with their home and away roles being reversed. This means that every team plays each other competitor twice – once at home and once away.
Teams earn points according to their performance in each game. A win is worth three points, a draw is worth one point and a loss earns no points. The team with the greatest number of points at the end of the season is declared the winner.
Should two or more teams tie on points after the last game of the season, head-to-head performance is used to determine the winner, with goal difference and the number of goals scored in the season serving as additional tie-breakers if required.
Regardless of whether success is achieved outright or thanks to the implementation of a tie-break rule, the winning team is awarded the Coppa Campioni d’Italia, which roughly translates as the Champions Cup of Italy.
Noteworthy Clubs and Teams
Whilst every team that participates in the Serie A football competition has to be considered top-flight, there is a handful of teams which are particularly noteworthy thanks to their consistently impressive performance at the highest level. Some of the main ones are:
Based in Turin, Juventus has won the Serie A competition 34 times. Their first success was achieved in the 1930/31 season, and their most recent was in the 2017/18, which makes them the current champions.
Shares joint-second place with Internazionale for the most Serie A championship wins, having lifted the cup 18 times, most recently in 2010/11.
This team is more formally known as Internazionale Milano, but simply as Inter Milan to most outside Italy. They currently have 18 Serie A wins to their credit, with their latest championship win having been secured in 2009/10.
Founded in 1927, this team have been Serie A champions on no fewer than three occasions. Their first title win came in 1941/42, and the most recent was in 2000/01.
Based in Rome, Lazio have won the Seria A competition twice. Those wins were achieved in 1973/74 and in 1999/2000.
Like their rivals Lazio, Napoli have lifted the Serie A cup twice. Their first success in this competition was achieved in 1986/87, and their second in 1989/90.
Serie A football clubs used to be able to sell television broadcasting rights to their games directly to the sports channels concerned, but they have also negotiated rights as a collective. It was that collective approach which helped Serie A clubs to secure a famous deal with Sky Italia to broadcast Serie A on TV for the 2010/11 and 2011/12 seasons for a reported €1.149 billion.
Outside Italy, Serie A games are televised by a variety of companies, with deals being negotiated and renegotiated for live football on TV with broadcasting organisations in each country. In the United Kingdom, for example, the television rights to Serie A games have been purchased by Premier Sports, which operates out of Ireland. This deal, which was announced at the beginning of 2019, enables Premier Sports to broadcast live football on TV for at least six games from each Serie A round until 2021.
Memorable TV Moments
Although the companies which have the right to broadcast live football on TV can vary from season to season, Serie A matches have been delighting viewers for many decades. It is therefore unsurprising that there have also been quite a few memorable moments that fans will find difficult to forget. Some notable favourites include:
- Diego Maradona helping Napoli to win their first ever Serie A championship in 1986/87.
- A.C. Milan racking up an astonishing sequence of 58 games without a loss before finally losing to Parma in 1993.
- Gonzalo Higuain scoring 36 goals for Napoli from 35 matches in the 2015/16 season.
- Juventus winning their seventh consecutive championship in 2017/18.
- The first time the world saw Alejandro ‘Papu’ Gomez performing his now-famous ‘Papu dance’.
The Serie A football league is considered one of the best in the world because it consistently features the best teams and has showcased the talents of many of the best players. Some of the current key players are as follows:
Cristiano Ronaldo - needs little introduction, being one of the superstars of modern football and captain of the national team for Portugal. The 34-year-old currently plays as a forward for Juventus.
Krzysztof Piatek - is a 23-year-old player from Poland who currently plays as a forward for Milan. He replaced Gonzalo Higuain and is a prolific goal-scorer.
Fabio Quagliarella - has played for several Serie A teams, including Napoli, Juventus and Torino. The Italian-born forward currently plays for Sampdoria.
Arek Milik - was born in Poland and plays for his national team. The 24-year-old has previously played for the Dutch club Ajax and currently plays as a striker for Napoli.
Alejandro ‘Papu’ Gomez - is a versatile player and seems equally comfortable whether serving as a forward, winger or attacking midfielder. The inventor of the ‘Papu dance’ currently plays for Atalanta.
Suso - is a winger, and sometimes an attacking midfielder, for Milan. Born in Spain, he also plays for the Spanish national team.