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  • Writer's pictureDag Jenkins

January 20, 1957: Torino Lazio 0-1

A Moonbeam shines in Turin

A Selmosson goal in the first half hands Lazio precious away win

The season so far

The previous season Lazio had finished 3rd. The manager was Luigi Ferrero for the first 14 matches and then Englishman Jesse Carver. The highlights were winning 3-2 away to Inter, winning the derby 1-0 (the other was 0-0), beating Juventus 2-0 at home and Milan 3-1 away. Top scorer was Lorenzo Bettini with 12 league goals while Arne Selmosson and Ermes Muccinelli got 10.


This season Carver was still the manager. Lazio had bought and sold lots of players. The main new arrivals were: defender Adelmo Eufemi (Livorno-back from loan), midfielders Arnaldo Lucentini (Triestina), Luigi Moltrasio (Torino), Umberto Pinardi (Udinese), forwards Karl Aage Præst (Juventus) and Humberto Tozzi (Palmeiras).


Leaving Lazio were: keeper Aldo De Fazio (Salernitana), defenders Francesco Antonazzi (Chinotto Neri-after 252 league games), Attilio Giovannini (Nissena Caltanissetta), Angelo Villa (SPAL) and forward Rinaldo Olivieri (Triestina).


So far Lazio had played 15 games. They had won 5, drawn 5 and lost 5 (including derby 0-3). Top scorer was Selmosson with 5 goals. A week earlier Lazio had drawn 1-1 away to Genoa.


Torino the previous season finished 11th under manager Annibale Frossi (Olympic champion as a player in 1936 and top scorer). Torino had won one and drawn one against Lazio and done the same against Juventus. Torino's top scorer was German Horst Buhtz with 10 league goals.


This season the manager was at first Fioravante Baldi but he had been sacked a week earlier and now it was temporarily Argentine Antonio Vespucio Liberti (one of the directors). The main new players were: defender Gianfranco Ganzer (Milan), midfielders Eduardo Ricagni (Milan), Luigi Bodi (Alessandria), forwards, former Lazio, Dionisio Arce (Novara), Gino Armano (Inter-after 255 games and 73 goals), Hasse Jeppson (Napoli) and Juan Carlos Tacchi (Ferro Carril Oeste).


Leaving were: defender Enzo Bearzot (Inter-he would be back), midfielders Horst Buhtz (Young Fellows Zurich), José Curti (retiring), Luigi Moltrasio (Lazio), former Lazio, Vittorio Sentimenti III (Modena), forwards, former Lazio, Lelio Antoniotti (Juventus) and Piero Cazzaniga (Triestina).


Some interesting players both coming and going.


So far, the Granata had won 4 (including Roma 2-0 away), drawn 4 (including derby 1-1) and lost 7. Torino were on 12 points, 3 less than Lazio. The last two games however had been defeats, 1-3 Milan and 1-2 Napoli both away.


A game of uncertain outcome today between two inconsistent teams. Torino were keen to interrupt the losing streak but were without a proper coach. Lazio were an unpredictable team capable of anything, in the good and the bad.


The match: Sunday, January 20, 1957, Stadio Filadelfia, Turin

A freezing day in the "città della mole" attracted about 15,000 spectators. The pitch was slightly icy but playable.


The first stages were balanced but just after the quarter hour mark Lazio took the lead. In the 17th minute Pasquale Vivolo set up Arne Selmosson who put a precise cross goal shot into the far corner. Torino 0 Lazio 1.


Torino then attacked head down while Lazio relied on quick counterattacks. The Granata put a lot of pressure on the Lazio defence and used their physicality to try and break down the Biancocelesti's resistance.


Toro were constantly looking for contacts in the area probably hoping to get a penalty out of the referee. The Lazio defence however was solid, with Bob Lovati safe and Moltrasio in particular defending brilliantly. Torino attacked but more like a battering ram than with precise moves. Half time Torino 0 Lazio 1.


The second half was similar. Torino pushed forward but former Lazio Dionisio Arce was well controlled, Tacchi too obsessed with dribbling and Jepson too clumsy. Tacchi did manage once to get free but his shot hit the outside of the post.


As a matter of fact, it was Lazio who had the best chances to score. First Renzo Burini went close and then Ermes Muccinelli's close range effort was blocked by Vicnezo Rigamonti.


"Il Toro" tried one last desperate tactical move, pushing strong defender Petro Grosso up front to get on the end of the high crosses into the Lazio area. The Lazio defence however stood firm and resisted the home side's last assaults. Torino 0 Lazio 1.


All in all, a deserved victory for Lazio. The Biancocelesti had absorbed the Granata's pressure well and struck on the break. Selmosson's solitary goal had been enough to clinch the two points. Lazio were now up to just above mid-table while Torino had lost three in a row and things were not looking good.


Who played for Torino

Rigamonti, Cuscela, Brancaleoni, Ganzer, Grosso, Rimbaldo, Arce, Armano, Jeppson, Ricagni, Tacchi

Manager: Liberti


Who played for Lazio

Lovati, Molino, Pinardi, Eufemi, Carradori, Moltrasio, Muccinelli, Tozzi, Vivolo, Burini, Selmosson

Manager: Carver


Referee: Pieri

Goals: 17' Selmosson


What happened next

Lazio had a better second half of the season and ended up a positive 3rd again. In the end Lazio won 14 (including Milan 3-0 at home, Inter 1-0 away and Palermo 6-2 away), drew 13 (including Roma and Torino, both 2-2 and Juventus 3-3 away) and lost 7. Top scorer was Arne Selmosson with 12 league goals while Pasquale Vivolo and Humberto Tozzi got 9 each. Another good season for the Biancocelesti.


Torino improved eventually and finished 7th. A new manager, Oberdan Ussello, came in until February 18 but only got two points in four matches. Things took a turn for the better with the appointment of Yugoslav Blagoje Marjanovic from February 18. The Granata won four consecutive matches (including Roma 1-0 and Juventus 4-1). Torino then only lost two more matches and ended up with 13 wins, 9 draws and 12 defeats. Top scorer was Gino Armano with 12 league goals.


The Scudetto was won by Milan for the 6th time while at the opposite end Palermo and Triestina said goodbye for now.

Lazio 1956-57






Goals scored

Serie A






Top five appearances


Serie A













Top five goal scorers













Let's talk about Arne Selmosson

Source Wikipedia

Arne Selmosson was born in Götene, Sweden, on March 29, 1931.


His first club was Jönköpings Södra in his homeland. He played 80 league games over three seasons and scored 33 goals. In this period, he served his obligatory military service in the Fire Brigade and he remained fond of the force forever more.


He arrived in Italy in 1954, brought by Udinese for 150 million lire. The Friulani's manager was former Lazio Giuseppe Bigogno and they had a great season on the pitch finishing 2nd behind Milan. The Zebrette went unbeaten from December 12 until the end of the season. Selmosson played 34 league games and scored 14 goals (Fiorentina, SPAL x2, Lazio, Pro Patria, Atalanta, Napoli, Catania, Bologna, SPAL, Lazio, Juventus, Roma, Atalanta). His attacking partner was future Lazio Lorenzo Bettini. Udinese's second place was however ruined by the emergence of some illegal match fixing by players and directors dating back to the 1952-53 season. Udinese were punished with relegation to Serie B.


Selmosson however stayed in Serie A joining Lazio while Alberto Fontanesi and Norwegian Per Bredesen went up to Udine. The manager was Luigi Ferrero for the first 14 games and then Englishman Jesse Carver. The Biancocelesti had a good season finishing 3rd. The highlights were beating Inter 3-2 and Milan 3-1 both away, Juventus 2-0 at home and the derby 1-0 (the other was 0-0). Selmosson played 34 league games with 10 goals (Padova, Atalanta, Inter, Triestina, Bologna, Inter, SPAL, Juventus, Pro Patria, Genoa) plus 2 games in the President of the Republic Cup with 1 goal.


In 1956-57 Carver stayed on and Lazio finished 3rd again. Selmosson scored his first goal in a local derby, the equaliser in a 2-2 draw. He played 34 league games with 12 goals (Bologna, Atalanta, Triestina, Padova, Genoa, Torino, Palermo, Fiorentina, Milan, Roma, Napoli, Torino) and 1 game in the President of the Republic Cup.


The 1957-58 would be his last with Lazio. The Biancocelesti started with Milovan Ćirić for twenty games and then finished with Alfredo Monza. Lazio finished 12th and Selmosson played 33 league games with 9 goals (Bologna, Inter, Napoli, Atalanta, Napoli, Roma, Juventus, Torino, Verona). He scored in the 2-1 victory against Roma in March but unfortunately the Giallorossi would be his next team.


Lazio were in financial difficulty and had to sell their star striker to the highest bidder, who turned out to be bitter rivals Roma, for 135 million lire. Selmosson himself was not too pleased but had no choice. It was a hugely controversial event in Rome and such was the Swedes popularity that some people even changed allegiance just so they could watch "Raggio di Luna" (Moonbeam) as he was nicknamed. One such defector was future Prime Minister Massimo D'Alema, it is probably fair to say many of the fickle team swappers were of non-Roman origins.


So Selmosson joined Roma and missed out on being part of the Lazio team that lifted the club's first historic silverware, in September 1958 under Fulvio Bernardini. He had played 101 league games and scored 31 goals for Lazio.


Selmosson stayed three seasons on the other side of the Tiber and in fairness did pretty well. He played 87 league games and scored 30 goals (3 against Lazio...). He became the first player to have scored for both Lazio and Roma in local derbies (since emulated by Aleksandar Kolarov and Pedro). Roma finished 6th, 9th and 5th and won the Fairs Cup in 1961. His managers for the "Lupi" were fellow countryman Gunnar Nordahl for the first season and Alfredo Foni for the next two seasons (another former Lazio player, 1929-31). In his third season he played less and only scored 1 goal and decided to leave.


In 1961 he returned to Udine for three more seasons.  In the first the Bianconeri were relegated under Luigi Bonizzoni, then Sergio Manente and finally Alfredo Foni again. Selmosson played 23 league games and scored 6 goals (Atalanta, Fiorentina x2, Torino, Palermo, Juventus). One of his teammates was a young keeper called Dino Zoff plus former and future Lazio forward, Orlando Rozzoni (1959-61, 62-64 and 65-66).


He stayed in Udine in Serie B and the Zebrette finished 14th under Alberto Eliani. Selmosson played 21 league games and scored 7 goals. (Messina, Foggia, Padova, Monza x2, Parma, Sambenedettese). Zoff was by now undisputed first keeper.


Selmosson's last year of football ended in another relegation. In 1963-64, under Eliani and then Armando Segato, Udinese were relegated to C1. Selmosson played 29 league games with 5 goals (Venezia home and away, Monza, Cagliari, Verona).


He then retired at 33. He returned to Sweden and continued playing at amateur level for Skoevde AIK and then coached minor leagues. He then settled in Götene and, like many players of his generation, he opened a sports shop. In 2009 a monument in his honour was put up in his hometown.


At international level he won 4 caps for Sweden with 1 goal. He played in the 1958 World Cup in Sweden winning a silver medal (losing to 17-year-old Pelè's Brazil 2-5).


Selmosson was a forward and is considered one of the best Scandinavian players ever. He was 1.78 and 73 kilos. He was exceptionally quick but also very skilful. He usually played on the left side of attack from where he started his famous dribbling movements finishing with a shot or an assist for his attacking partners. He was also excellent in the air with perfect timing. He was well known for being a model sportsman and after scoring for Roma in derby against Lazio he refused to celebrate but instead walked back head down, earning the respect of both sets of fans (this is commonplace now but was unheard of at the time). He was a placid, laid back and shy character and this led to maybe his only weakness in that in the physical and sometimes dirty games in the provinces he was occasionally a bit out of the game.


As mentioned, he was nicknamed "Raggio di Luna", Moonbeam, for the colour of his hair and pallor of his skin. It was first coined in Udine but it stuck in Sweden too as "Månsträlen". His footballing talent and his "defection" to Roma have entered into Italian popular culture. Famous playwrights Giovannini and Guarinei wrote a play about him and Nils Liedholm who became a respected wine producer named a spumante after him. In Udine he has had a street entitled to him.


He was immensely popular at Lazio. His sale to Roma was a trauma for many. He stated he wanted to stay with the Biancocelesti but had no choice. Some Lazio directors had to resign and some could not leave their houses for a while. Fans threatened not to renew their season tickets and some took to the streets in protest and there were scuffles with the police. The worst hit however were the kids, many already had one of the first colour posters of their idol Selmosson in light blue and white, distributed by a local sport weekly only a week before his sale. He had been especially good with the Lazio youth kids, often appearing at their training sessions at Acqua Acetosa.


These fan protest scenes were seen again 30 years later when Sergio Cragnotti tried to sell Beppe Signori to Parma but this time the fans' protests were successful.


He is one of the few players who, after playing for both clubs, is respected on both sides of the Tiber, another being Fulvio Bernardini.


Arne Selmosson died on February 22, 2002.

Lazio Career


Serie A Appearances

Serie A Goals















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