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  • Writer's pictureDag Jenkins

Rino Gritti

Rino Gritti was born in Verdello (Bergamo), on December 3, 1948.


Source Lazio Wiki

He began playing football for his local village. In 1967 he joined Lecco in Serie B but did not make his debut for the Lombards.


In 1968 he was loaned to Pavia in Serie D. He played 24 games and scored 3 goals. The Azzurri came 9th in the B group.


In 1969, Gritti was back at Lecco in Serie C. He played 41 games for the Biancocelesti over two seasons and scored 7 goals. The Eagles finished 2nd and 8th.


In 1971 he was loaned to Lazio in Serie B. He played alongside Giorgio Chinaglia and under legendary manager Tommaso Maestrelli and Lazio won promotion. Gritti played 13 league matches with 1 goal (Genoa) and 7 in Coppa Italia with 1 goal (Napoli). His league goal against Genoa was vital as it gave Lazio the lead in the crucial penultimate game of the season. His goal against Napoli in the cup was a brilliant 30-metre free kick which beat the opposing keeper, no less than Dino Zoff.


The following season he returned to Lecco in Serie B. He played 24 games with 5 goals but the Lecchesi were relegated to Serie C.


In 1973-74 he joined Ternana in Serie B. The Rossoverdi, under Enzo Riccomini, were promoted to Serie A with a 3rd place. Gritti played 38 league games with 7 goals (Arezzo, Reggiana, Palermo, Brescia, Perugia, SPAL, Avellino) plus 4 in Coppa Italia with 1 goal (Cesena).


The following year in Serie A he played 22 league games with 2 goals (Varese, Sampdoria) plus 4 games in Coppa Italia. The Umbri however, again under Riccomini, were relegated with a 15th place. The "Fere" (The Beasts) drew both games against Lazio.


In 1975-76 he moved to Irpinia and joined Avellino in Serie B. He played 30 league games with 4 goals. The "Lupi" finished 9th.


The following year he stayed with the Biancoverdi. Avellino finished 14th and Gritti played 31 league games with 3 goals, plus 4 in Coppa Italia with 1 goal. The next season the Irpini would win a historic promotion to Serie A but Gritti had already moved on.


In 1977 he joined Piacenza in Serie C. He played for "Il Piace" for three seasons, making 94 league appearances with 17 goals.


In 1980 Gritti played a year for Riccione in Serie D and then one more year with regional team Ponte San Pietro, in his home province of Bergamo.


At 33 he retired after 22 games in Serie A (2 goals) and 142 in B (22 goals).


Gritti was a midfielder who had a particularly powerful long-range shot. His spell at Lazio was brief but successful. He arrived in the capital directly at the request of Maestrelli. He made a good contribution to the promotion of the 1971-72 season; his goal in Genoa was of great importance in the final promotion push.


Unfortunately, he would never get to tell his grandchildren he played for Lazio under Maestrelli and alongside the great Chinaglia, as he died prematurely at 34. He died on November 20, 1983, from pleural mesothelioma. The football ground in Verdello is now named after him.


Lazio Career

Season

Total appearances (goals)

Serie B

Coppa Italia

1971-72

24 (2)

17 (1)

7 (1)

Sources


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