Serie A is the elite championship of Italian professional soccer and one of the most popular soccer leagues in the world. It’s been around for more than 122 years and it keeps on bringing joy to sports fans from all over the world.
This is the league where some of the world’s best teams compete. The best example is Juventus, which is where one of the best players in soccer history Cristiano Ronaldo has been playing since 2018.
Speaking of Juventus, this team has been winning most of the Serie A titles lately, but that doesn’t mean the competition has been boring. On the contrary, the top tier of Italian soccer is always full of excitements, which is no surprise knowing that this is one of the toughest leagues on the planet.
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Serie A – Europe’s Fourth-Strongest Soccer League
As per UEFA’s league coefficient, Serie A is ranked fourth among European league based on the performances of Italian teams in the continental competitions.
The top four Serie A teams get a spot in the Champions League at the group stage. The number 5 team in the standings gets the ticket to the group stage of the Europa League. Finally, the team that comes in sixth at the end of the season gets to play Europa League qualification.
Biggest Clubs in the Serie A
In the 21st century, only four teams have won the Scudetto, namely Juventus, Inter, AC Milan, and AS Roma. However, this wasn’t always the case – there are 12 other clubs that have won the title of the top Italian tier in the past.
Some of those teams (Napoli, Lazio, etc.) are still flying very high in Serie A, although the trophy seems to slip from their hands in the end. Then, there are some previous winners that are struggling to stay in the top tier, including Genoa and Bologna. And there are also past winners that no longer play professional football, such as Casale and Novese.
Let’s leave the past for the history books and focus on the future! So, which clubs are we going to see competing for the Scudetto in the 2020s? Although nothing is certain in soccer, there is a handful of teams that stand out from the crowd in the Serie A, namely the following:
- Juventus – With 35 titles in total, 10 of which that were won in this century, Juventus has been synonymous with success in Italian soccer. However, Juventus did have its share of shameful Serie A moments, most notably its involvement in the ‘Calciopoli’ scandal that got the club stripped off the Serie A title due to match-fixing.
- AC Milan – Although the Rossoneri haven’t been that great in the last couple of years, this team has a really impressive history. Not only did AC Milan win 18 Serie A trophies, but this side has also won dozens of continental trophies. For instance, during the Berlusconi-era, the club has won 5 Champions League titles.
- Inter Milan – AC Milan’s city rival has seen some major improvements lately with the appointment of Antonio Conte as the manager. The result is that the Nerazzurri are now among the biggest Serie A contenders.
- Napoli – The Sky Blues form Naples won the Serie A when the legendary Diego Maradona was in the team. Those years are still remembered as the golden era in this city. But, then some rough times hit the club, culminating in bankruptcy. Famous Italian film producer Aurelio De Laurentiis then came as the savior of the club, eventually making it a serious candidate for winning the Serie A.
- AS Roma – With the club hero Francesco Totti in the team, AS Roma managed to get ahold of the Scudetto at the beginning of the century. Since his retirement, the team from the Italian capital hasn’t been that successful, although we’ve seen a resurgence in the last couple of seasons.
- Lazio – Despite not being considered the best team in Italy, Lazio has always been near the top of the table. And in a recent couple of seasons, the squad of Lazio has been packed with super-talented players. Some of their players like Ciro Immobile and Sergej Milinkovic-Savic have a market price of over $100M.
Serie A Records and Milestones
The year 1898 is generally considered to be the year when Serie A was born. That’s when the Campionato Italiano di Football was founded, which is the predecessor of the competition we know today.
The first-ever winner of the Italian championship was Genoa, a team that then went on winning eight other titles, ending with the one from the 1923–24 season.
With nine titles in total, Genoa is the fourth-most successful club in the Serie A. AC Milan and its city-rival inter each have twice the number, that is 18 titles. Still, the team with the most titles is Juventus with 35.
Serie A clubs have been very successful on the continental stage as well, winning a total of 12 Champions League trophies (including those from the times when the competition was called the European Cup).
When it comes to players’ milestones, the player with the most goals scored in Serie A is Silvio Piola with 274 goals to his name. It’s very unlikely that someone is going to surpass that number anytime soon as there are no active players with over 200 goals scored in this league.
Gunnar Nordahl holds the record for most Capocannoniere titles. This award that literally translates to as the ‘head gunner’ is given to the most-prolific goalscorer at the end of every season.
There are no players who can break Nordahl’s record of five Capocannoniere awards. At least not this season, although Ciro Immobile seems capable of achieving that in the next few years, especially if he wins his third title in 2020. According to most bookmakers, he’s very likely to do so.
Serie A Betting Tips
When it comes to betting on Serie A events, an important thing to remember is that the home turf matters a lot in this league.
Italian soccer stadiums are huge, with the biggest one, Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, having the capacity of over 80,000 seats. With so many fans supporting the home side, the host often performs better than expected.
But, it’s just about the size of the stadium. Some Italian clubs, such as Napoli, have incredibly passionate fans, who have the power to lift their team’s spirit when needed.
Another good piece of advice is to focus on the team’s style of play. There are some Italian teams that are great at the back, while others feel most comfortable when they are attacking.
For instance, Juventus has been famous for their defensive wall that’s almost unbreakable, with Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci playing as central defenders. Recently, with the appointment of Antonio Conte as the manager, a similar has become the case with Inter.
On the other hand, there are some attacking-minded teams like Atalanta or Lazio, which usually score over two goals per game on average.
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