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  • Writer's pictureDag Jenkins

June 29, 1958: Palermo Lazio 2-2 Coppa Italia

Updated: Jun 29

Battle of Eagles ends in a draw but Roman species flying high


Lazio consolidate their top spot in the Coppa Italia group with a draw at Palermo.



Source Wikipedia

The season so far


The previous season had been excellent. Under English manager Jesse Carver, Lazio had finished 3rd in Serie A.


This year, however, things had not gone as well. Lazio had started the season with Milovan Čiric as coach, then replaced by Alfredo Monza after 19 games.


In the summer there had been a few transfer movements. In had come defender Mario Colombo (Pro Patria), midfielders Giorgio Bravi (Taranto), Dante Castellazzi (Taranto) and Ugo Pozzan (Bologna) plus striker Brunello Cocciuti (Reggina). Out of these only Pozzan would play regularly.


Two players were retiring: goalkeeper Aldo De Fazio and striker Karl Aage Præst. Also leaving was legendary defender Primo Sentimenti V (Udinese) and forward Lorenzo Bettini (Udinese).


In the league Lazio had finished 12th after 10 wins, 10 draws and 14 defeats. Lazio had lost the first derby but won the second 2-1. Top scorer was Arne Selmosson with 9 league goals.


This was a cup game. The Coppa Italia formula was group stages to be played now at the end of this season and then the winners of each would go into the quarterfinals to be played in September, so in the next season. A strange format but we've seen worse in the cup's contorted history. It was also during the World Cup period as Italy had not qualified, but some foreign players were in Sweden '58 (including Selmosson - but he was controversially leaving for Roma anyway)


Lazio had a new manager, as from June 7 Fulvio Bernardini (former Lazio and Roma player/coach) took over.


Lazio had started their cup campaign positively. They were in a group with three other teams (Roma, Napoli, Palermo) all to be played twice. So far, Lazio had won three out of three. They had beaten Palermo 5-1 at home, Napoli 3-1 at home and Roma 3-2 away. After three rounds of matches Lazio had 6 points, Napoli 2, Roma 2, Palermo 2. Top scorer was Humberto Tozzi with 7 goals.


Palermo had finished 6th in Serie B. They had changed managers from Pietro Rava to Attilio Kossovel and finally to Carlo Rigotti. The Rosanero top scorer in the league had been Argentine Santiago Vernazza known as "Ghito" with 12 goals.


So far, in the cup Palermo had lost 5-1 to Lazio, then beaten Roma 3-2 at home and lost 4-2 away to Napoli.


This late afternoon game saw Lazio trying to consolidate their top spot while for Palermo it was possibly a last chance to give them any hope of qualification.


The match: Sunday, June 29, 1958, Stadio Comunale, Palermo


A sunny late June day did not attract a big crowd, obviously losing out to the more appealing Mondello seaside. The game kicked off at 17.45, Palermo and the west side of Sicily are generally not as hot as the east side (Messina, Catania etc) but could still be uncomfortable.


Lazio already played with some of their new signings: goalkeeper Idilio Cei, midfielder Egidio Fumagalli and forwards Claudio Bizzarri and Maurilio Prini.


The game started at a slow pace which suited Lazio fine, but then with the first real attack the home side scored. In the 12th minute Giuliano Piovanelli passed to Gianni Sandri on the right who took off and dribbled the fullback and then put in a perfect cross for Cecchi, on his debut, to control and power in. Palermo 1 Lazio 0.

The Biancocelesti however showed their superior level by equalising immediately. In the 14th minute a cross by Fumagalli was headed on into the area by Prini to Tozzi who struck and drew Lazio level. All in two minutes Palermo 1 Lazio 1.


The rhythm then slowed down again even if Palermo were more aggressive. In the 19th minute Sandri shot over the bar and Cei was kept on his toes by the Palermitani forwards. The Rosanero's positivity was rewarded in the 21st minute when an Alberto Malavasi cracking low shot from about 30 metres beat Cei in the bottom left corner. Palermo 2 Lazio 1.


Lazio again reacted well and forced a series of five corners in quick succession. Tozzi had a shot which shaved the post and then Lazio equalised again. A scramble in the area saw Renzo Burini take advantage of defenders Piovanelli and Corrado Danti's hesitancy to sneak in and score. Palermo 2 Lazio 2.


The only other chance before halftime was a good acrobatic scissor kick by Sandri, well saved by Cei.


The impression was that Lazio were in control and could change gear when necessary but they had to be careful as Palermo were giving it their best shot.


For the second 45 minutes the Sicilian "Aquile" changed keepers from Danti to Robert Forte. The game restarted at a slightly faster pace and Lazio seemed more willing to take the initiative. Fumagalli had a dangerous close-range header kept out by Forte and the visitors had a series of corners.


As the game went on, however, Lazio settled for a more passive approach, obviously pleased with a point. Palermo had a couple of late opportunities, first a Malavasi bicycle kick just wide and then Sandri missed a good chance after a neat move with Cecchi. Lazio then controlled the last minutes and earned a precious away point. Palermo 2 Lazio 2.


Lazio topped the table with 7 points ahead of Roma on 4 (the Giallorossi had beaten Napoli a day earlier), Palermo 3, Napoli 2. Two games to go, next up an away trip to Naples in a week's time. Lazio were in a healthy position.


Who played for Palermo


Danti (46' Forte), De Bellis, Sereni, Lodi, Piovanelli, Malavasi, Barbieri, Biagini, Sandri, Azzali, Cecchi

Manager: Rigotti


Who played for Lazio


Manager: Bernardini


Referee: Angelini


Goals: 12' Cecchi, 14' Tozzi, 21' Malavasi, 36' Burini


What happened next


A week later Lazio thumped Napoli 4-0 away (Burini x2, Pozzan, Bizzarri) and then got a precious 1-1 draw in the derby (Tozzi). Lazio came top of the group with 10 points, Roma 7, Palermo 5, Napoli 2. Lazio qualified for the quarterfinals to be played in September.


Before then, the big news in Rome was Selmosson's "betrayal".


It was more a trauma, as Swedish idol Arne Selmosson, (nicknamed “Raggio di Luna”, Moonbeam, for the pallor of his skin) after 3 highly successful seasons and 31 goals in 101 games for Lazio, did the unmentionable: he swapped “sides of the Tiber” and signed for bitter rivals Roma. It was a major event in Rome and some people were even said to have changed teams siding with the “Giallorossi” just so they could continue following the Swede (such as former Prime Minister Massimo D'Alema, just to name one). Until 2018 he was the only player to have scored for both Lazio and Roma in derbies (since emulated by Aleksandar Kolarov and Pedro). So, Lazio would start the next season “Selmossonless”.


Anyway, Swede or no Swede, in the quarterfinal Lazio beat Marzotto Valdagno 2-1 at home (Fumagalli, Tozzi). On September 14 Lazio then beat Juventus, in the semi-final, 2-0 at home (the Tozzi-Fumagalli duo again).The Biancocelesti therefore set up a final versus Fiorentina who had defeated Bologna 4-2 in the other semi-final.


Fiorentina were a good team and had arrived 2nd in Serie A the previous season, under current Lazio manager Fulvio Bernardini. This year they had added Swedish goal machine Kurt Hamrin to the squad managed by Hungarian Lajos Czeizler.


The final was played in Rome on September 24. In front of a 55,000 crowd Lazio managed to win their first historic silverware. With a goal by Maurilio Prini after 30 minutes Lazio defeated Fiorentina 1-0.


Joy at last for the Romans who finally won a trophy. They would have to enjoy it, the next domestic cup came 40 years later.


Lazio 1957-58

Competition

Played

Won

Drawn

Lost

Goals scored

Serie A

34

10

10

14

45

Coppa Italia

6

4

2

-

18

Total

40

14

12

14

63

Top five appearances

Player

Total

Serie A

Coppa Italia

Pinardi

35

30

5

Molino

34

34

-

Selmosson

33

33

-

Muccinelli

32

32

-

Pozzan

32

27

5

Top five goal scorers

Player

Total

Serie A

Coppa Italia

Tozzi

16

7

9

Burini

12

7

5

Selmosson

9

9

-

Pozzan

6

5

1

Muccinelli

5

5

-

Let's talk about Nicola Lo Buono


Source Wikipedia

Nicola Lo Buono was born in Bari on June 4, 1933.


He started his career in nearby Trani in Serie D in 1953-54. He played two seasons for the "Dragoni” with 53 league appearances. The Biancazzurri finished 6th and 4th.


In the summer of 1955 during a match between Serie D North and South he was spotted by Lazio scout and former player Carlo Parola. Lo Buono was then signed by Lazio although it pretty much went under the radar as it was overshadowed by bigger buys (Arne Selmosson to name one).


In his first season in Rome, first under Luigi Ferrero (1-14) and then Englishman Jesse Carver (15-34), Lo Buono played 10 league games with 1 goal (Fiorentina). He made his debut in the derby on April 4, 1956, with a 1-0 Lazio win. Lazio had a good season finishing 3rd.


The following season was similar. Lazio again finished 3rd and Lo Buono made 7 league appearances.


In 1957-58 Lazio changed manager to Milovan Ćirić (1-19) and then to Alfredo Monza (20-34). Lazio finished 12th and Lo Buono made 16 league appearances.


In the summer of 1958 Fulvio Bernardini became Lazio manager and Lo Buono started playing even more regularly. He played 30 league games, 8 in the ‘57-‘58 Coppa Italia (played in summer and September '58) and 1 game in the ‘58-‘59 Coppa Italia (Lazio knocked out by Inter 0-1 in January '59). Lazio finished 11th in Serie A. In September 1958 however Lazio won their first historic trophy beating Fiorentina 1-0 to lift the Coppa Italia. Lo Buono played the final helping to keep Kurt Hamrin at bay.


In 1959-60 Lo Buono played 23 league games and 3 in Coppa Italia. Lazio came 12th in the league and 3rd in Coppa Italia.


The 1960-61 season was a difficult one and Lazio were relegated for the first time in thirty years. Bernardini was replaced by former star player Enrique "El Flaco" Flamini after ten games (with Jesse Carver as Technical Director from the 15th game) but things did not improve. They did however reach the Coppa Italia final losing 2-0 to Fiorentina and won the second derby 2-1. Lo Buono only played 5 league games due to a muscular injury in the autumn that kept him out of action for a long period.


The 1961-62 season in Serie B would be Lo Buono's last in Rome. Lazio, under Paolo Tedeschini (1-21, Bob Lovati (22-27) and then Carlo Facchini (28-38) narrowly missed out on promotion by one point with a 4th place. Lo Buono however was out of favour after his injury and made no appearances.


In 1962 he was sold to Pescara in Serie C. Despite more injuries, Lo Buono made 40 league appearances over the next two seasons. The "Delfini" (The Dolphins) finished 4th and 10th.


He retired early at 31, hampered by physical problems, and became a manager. He started at Formia, in South Lazio, in 1964 at amateur level. He would then coach ten different amateur regional clubs over the next 15 years. He won 7 promotions and in 1976-77 won the "Seminatore d'oro" award while manager at Colleferro (near Rome) as best Italian Amateur League coach.


In 1986 he took on the job of Sporting Director at local Roman club Vis Aurelia, one of the best youth sectors in the area.


As a player Lo Buono was a left full-back. He played 107 games for Lazio over seven seasons plus 60 in the reserves league (Lazio won it in 1954-55). He was a pillar of the 1958 Cup winning team, playing every game. That first Lazio triumph took on legendary status for later generations, a team that had actually won something, also thanks to Nicola Lo Buono.


Lo Buono died on September 8, 2009, in Rome.


Lazio Career

Season

Total appearance (goals)

Serie A

Coppa Italia

Cup of the Alps

Italo French Friendship Cup

1955-56

10 (1)

10 (1)

-

-

-

1956-57

7

7

-

-

-

1957-58

21

16

5

-

-

1958-59

34

30

4

-

-

1959-60

27

23

2

-

2

1960-61

8

5

1

2

-

Total

104 (1)

91 (1)

12

2

2

Sources


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