I feel as though we’ve gotten pretty good at complaining about trivial things. By we I’m referring to the sport watching public–there are other matters worth fighting for in the world, of course.
And even with that said, was anyone really offended by the ‘controversy’ that took place yesterday, as Juventus wrapped up another Scudetto with a 2-0 win against Bologna at the Dall’Ara. I’ll walk that back a little. Were Rossoblù supporters disrespected by Conte’s actions in the least bit?
The facts: Juventus lead 2-0 with one minute to go, and temporarily went 12 points clear at the top of the Serie A table. As seen in the video above, Conte began to celebrate with the bianconeri faithful that traveled east. Bologna manager Stefano Pioli didn’t care for this, berating Conte for an exaggerated celebration and showing a lack of respect to the home team.
Via Football Italia, Conte responded to Pioli’s criticism:
“I was celebrating with the Juventus fans,” insisted Conte in his Press conference. “I turned towards the Curva and the areas of the stands that I could see were full of Juventini. If I can’t even celebrate with my own supporters, then what can I do?
“With one minute to go, I am 2-0 up and putting a solid foundation on a Scudetto and am supposed to worry about how and where I celebrate? Are we kidding?
I guess we’re not. Conte ended by saying he feels like leaving Italy.
Instead, try seeing how Juventus are welcomed in stadiums. I was truly stunned that a civilized city like Bologna greeted the team bus with sticks, rocks, spit, even people who shouted vile abuse while holding four-year-old children in their arms. What kind of an education are we giving young people?
If I have to expect a welcome like this in Bologna, then I say that it really makes me want to leave Italy and go abroad. It must be a simpler life elsewhere.
Strong words from a decent man. With a resume littered with accomplishments, the suitors will be lining up — Chelsea, PSG, Real Madrid, the list goes on. Conte’s comments should serve as a wake up call for the big wigs in Italy. Racial incidents continue to plague the league. Attendance numbers are static. Corruption is acknowledged, yet it remains unfettered depending on connections and associations.
The Serie A can’t afford to lose people like Antonio Conte. It looks as though they just might.