The Scudetto (Neapolitan) by Gino Palumbo

The Triumph of Gino Palumbo and the Neapolitan School.

As the old saying goes, revenge is a dish best eaten cold. The same goes for the rematch. So, assuming that there is no doubt about the Napoli championship not associated with superstitions, witchcraft and other esoterics, maybe maybe Gino Palumbo He was also content not to have prevented Gianni Brera, an excellent fork, from burning his tongue and setting the table well before the championship’s natural deadline.

And if it’s true, as they say, that every team has unchanging characteristics over time, then that’s it “the most Neapolitan of the Scudettos”to quote Edmondo Berselli, because it’s time for revenge for Neapolitan football as Palumbo understood it, Tempo Grangiuàn, who called the opponent’s goals “stupid” (when things went well), to the despair of the Italian defense.

From here, to claim that the ideas outlined by Palumbo are the incarnation of the verb is equally questionable. Or we wouldn’t love football precisely because of its ability to create clear hierarchies that are noble but last a cigarette because they are easy to question and suggest different visionswhose success is subordinate to victory and not to the personal taste of the critic on duty.

Translated, football means beautiful because it is varied.

So Palumbo sits today on the chariot of the victorious general. Too bad he didn’t make it alive: he actually disappeared in September 1987, having declined the post of director of the “Corriere della Sera” for health reasons, after returning from a long experience as director of the “rosea”. He was 66 years old but had already impressed a change in Italian journalism through a less courtly language, effective titles, also shouted but never exaggerated, with strong graphic impact not only on the first page. With the news at the center of everything.

And the leadership side of his career is probably the most successful among his contemporaries to this day. But Palumbo, who was born in Cava de’ Tirreni in the province of Salerno, was also an excellent football connoisseur, a sharp pen who was one of the first to smell the need Dive deeper into the world of football and beyond, suggesting human implications and enriching the plot with details stolen from the social and political sphere. But above all as a reporter by trade (it is said that he took the tram back from San Siro to listen to the comments of the spectators), he advocated a more open, braver and more spectacular game.

He tried to balance with ideas a modest spelling compared to some of his peers that we now think would make a damn fine impression. It acted as a counterpoint Antonio Ghirelli, a giant of Italian journalism, also from Campania, who, as director of “Tuttosport”, launched some of the best pens of all time and then, under Sandro Pertini, became head of the press office of the Quirinale. Together they formed what Gianni Brera would have defined with slight displeasure “Neapolitan School”often accompanied by adjectives like “derelict” and nouns like “deunct”.

And for the two he, “Papa Lombardrei”, who is capable of extraordinary linguistic inventions, also coined the term “Sorbonagri”, another whiplash of a memorable argument of ideas on pillars of lead. They were actually separated by a distant intellectual background and a contrasting vision of football: Brera was the ideologue of the defensive, the “double central defender” and the Santo Catenaccio against the brave football of Ghirelli and Palumbo, after which he “a sport too real, too human, to reward those who are afraid“.

According to Brera, on the other hand, it was all ahead, the good game an illusion that he had some demotions of his heroes on his conscience.

The Breria sides, less willing to grasp the new times in terms of people’s tastes and also the growth of football, were convinced that in the “Blood sing complicated biohistorical memories’, and that therefore sport should be entirely dependent on race, diet and maybe even climate: ‘Why aren’t even Berruti born in the south?“. Not to mention the usual jeremiads against attacking football’s ‘ongoing heresy’: «Only the Neapolitan school showed that they valued the high signatures as a show: his inability it did not allow evaluating the defensive gaps that favored the Goleades».

Palumbo answered him in the pages of the Corriere, soon to be renamed Partenope Sera: “IThe fundamental concept of football is movement. Movement gives men superiority in numbers in defense, gives superiority in numbers to men in attack. […] Especially movement; the awareness of being able to impose your own game instead of just thinking about how to destroy your opponent’s; the utility of having every man in the defense phase and every man in the attack phase; the dangers of “schematization” at any cost; the need for an “offensive spirit”, i.e. the goal as a goal. […]

To Carand not always to be afraid».

in summary, two ideas that clash, as well as their theorists. It happened in the press box of the “Rigamonti” stadium in Brescia. It seems that Palumbo, who had recently arrived in Milan from Naples, where he worked for Il Mattino and where he founded the historic weekly Sport Sud, swore it to Brera after the latter warned him not to change the shadow of the cathedral «the knitting arguments that had sent Napoli to Serie B again and again».

He hit him. On the other hand, even in Naples, Palumbo seems to have been challenged to a duel by a blood noble, sports director of the newspaper “Roma”, at the height of a controversy involving Jeppson and Achille Lauro in Naples. Surprised and outraged, Gianni Brera, a former parachute officer and amateur boxer, left him a fatal series of blows. «My husband fell headlong (without electrocution, of course): he staggered to his feet and instinctively grabbed a metal chair: not to sit down, I guess».

Decades later, when a team accepted invitations to exorcise one of the monsters that, according to Antonio Ghirelli, “Pitfalls the vitality of football: the mindless tactics‘, that’s exactly Napoli, which the two journalists cheered on without too much caution. Naples spinning the ball, a steamroller terrifying the queens of Europe, dreaming big and maybe even casting a few spells less in this case. The chain of this long genetic code, traditionally so un-Italian (an expression stolen from Angelo Carotenuto), looks almost like a chapel designed by Palumbo and gradually frescoed by Vinício, Sarri and Spalletti, whose paintings however will be unforgettable and legendary.

A bit like the Mona Lisa, which makes the Louvre special, but is not the only masterpiece kept in the large museum. Because as mentioned in the introduction, it will be the first cause for celebration for Naples a truly Neapolitan shield, i.e. a son of the “Neapolitan school”. Paradoxically, football in Naples had previously only won on Gianni Brera’s ideas. Ottavio Bianchi placed Renica behind big bulldogs: Peppe Bruscolotti “Palo ‘e fierro”, Moreno Ferrario and l’enfant du pays Ciro Ferrara. Bigon, on the other hand, even declared himself a student of the first convinced Italianist, Father Nereo Rocco.

It was necessary spallettiin short, and not Maradona to please Gino Palumbo.

And now that the champagne corks have exploded after The Times covered Naples with the usual rhetoric of the clothes hanging between the shutters and offered the god Diego as the new San Gennaro and “La Naciòn” of Buenos Aires beautiful fresco of Neapolitan superstition, a city that loves characters like Troisi, De Filippo and Pino Daniele «but then he acts like the stereotypes he says he fights», citing the heavenly image of the Pibe de Oro and “muchos más” at the Scudetto party, that’s obvious Among them must also be Gino Palumbo, a noble father of this success and of those to come. This year’s novel proved him right. Troisi would have said: “Sorry for the delay”.

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