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  • Writer's pictureDag Jenkins

Orlando Tognotti

Updated: Aug 22, 2023

Orlando Virgilio Tognotti was born in La Spezia, on January 24, 1904.

Orlando Tognotti is front row, first from the right. Source Wikipedia

He was formed football wise in the youth sector of Unione Veloce Juventus of La Spezia.

He started his career in 1921 with his hometown club Spezia. He stayed six seasons, four in Serie A and two in Serie B. Tognotti played 84 league games and scored 12 goals.

In 1927 he joined fellow Ligurians Genova 1893 (modern day Genoa - they returned to being called Genoa in 1945). He made his debut against Casale on June 24, 1928. He achieved a 2nd place with the "Grifone" and access to the Central European Cup.

In 1929 Tognotti joined Lazio. In his first year he played under Hungarian coach Ferenc Molnár (briefly replaced by Pietro Piselli) and made 26 league appearances. Lazio finished 15th.

In his second year Molnár started (1-26), then Cesare Migliorini (27-31) and finally Brazilian Amílcar (27-34). Lazio came 8th and Tognotti played 32 league games.

In the 1931-32 season Amílcar stayed on as player manager. Lazio came 13th and Tognotti played 6 league games.

In 1932 Tognotti joined Terni in the first division (below Serie B). He played 22 games with 2 goals.

The following two seasons he played with Pisa. In his first the Nerazzurri were promoted to Serie B. He played 38 league games and scored 1 goal for the Pisani.

He retired young at 29 and became a manager. He started with the Ascoli youth sector and then had a brief spell with Ascoli's first team. He then had stints at Teramo (1937), Ascoli again (1938-40) and Chieti (1940-41).

During the war period he returned to Rome and coached local teams (Alba Motor, Alba Roma, Alba Trastevere - same team with different names - and then Poligrafico Roma).

In 1948 came his big moment. After the sacking of Tony Cargnelli, Lazio turned to Tognotti. He was Lazio's manager for the last 20 matches and Lazio came 10th. His biggest satisfaction was surely winning the derby 2-0 on April 21 1948, with goals by Flavio Cecconi and Costantino De Andreis.

He started the following season too, but was replaced after ten games by Mario Sperone. Lazio had drawn the derby 1-1 but lost six and were still winless.

In 1952 he joined Catanzaro in Serie D. The "Aquile del Sud" won the Serie D Scudetto and were promoted to Serie C. It is to this day the Calabresi's only trophy. He stayed another three seasons in Serie C with the Giallorossi.

He then returned to Chieti for two more seasons in Serie D. In his second, and last, the Neroverdi were promoted to Serie C.

Tognotti is one of the few who had the satisfaction of both playing and coaching Lazio (Bob Lovati, Eugenio Fascetti, Simone Inzaghi and some others). He was known as Tognotti II to distinguish him from his brother Arrigo who played for Spezia. In Rome he was also known as "Maccarese" (a rural and seaside area near Rome) for his unglamorous choice of holiday destination. Orlando was a defender and played at left full-back. He played 64 league games for Lazio, the peak of his career. He never won a derby as a player but got his revenge as manager.

Orlando Tognotti died in Rome on March 7, 1963.

Lazio career


Appearances in Serie A











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