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What happened in the 1913-14 First Category Championship

Source Lazio Wiki

The previous season had seen Pro Vercelli beat Lazio in the final. There was no contest as the Piedmontese team was the strongest in Italy at the time. The best news however was the introduction of the Centre-Southern Italian teams to the competition.


The formula for this season was the same as the previous one. Two main sections: a Northern one made up of the three groups of ten teams with the top two of each group meeting in a final group to determine the northern winner, and a centre-south championship. The latter was made up of two groups, Tuscany and Lazio. The winners of the two regional groups would meet in a semifinal with the other semi made up of the two Neapolitan teams. The winners would meet in the centre-south championship final. The northern and southern champions would then meet to determine the national champion.


Liguria-Piedmont section


The top two teams qualified and it was a huge battle between Casale, Genoa and Pro Vercelli. At the end of the first half of games, Casale had a one point lead over Pro Vercelli, Torino were on 14 points and Genoa on 13. The Granata lost ground in the second half and Casale pushed up. With two games to the end, they had 29 points, Genoa second on 27, Pro Vercelli third on 26. But in the second last round of games Genoa beat Casale and Pro Vercelli thrashed Liguria so the table read Casale and Genoa 29, Pro Vercelli 28. All three won their last game so Pro Vercelli, who had won the last two 'scudetti' were out.


Lombardy section


It was called the Lombardy section but there were also two Piedmont teams, Juventus and Novara. At the end of the first half of the games, Inter and Milan were leading, Juventus were one point behind on 13, Novara on 12. In the second half Milan lost ground losing to Inter and Juventus and these were the teams that qualified for the next round.


Veneto-Emilia section


In this group Vicenza and Hellas qualified rather comfortably with an eight point lead over Modena.


Tuscany section


At the end of the first half of the matches, Firenze FBC and SPES Livorno were tied on 13 points with Virtus Juventusque on 10. In game ten Firenze surprisingly lost against Libertas and SPES drawing against Itala Firenze went top. Firenze FBC lost the next game too, SPES won so the Livorno team went +3 which became +4 in the next round and that was it for the qualification.


Lazio section


Lazio won every single game in their group, easily qualifying for the semifinal.


Northern Final group


Casale won the first six games and had a considerable advantage: five points more than Genoa and Inter. But in the next three games they earned just two points, allowing Genoa to come within two points. But in the final match Casale beat Inter and qualified for the final.


Centre-South semifinals


In the first semifinal between Lazio and SPES Livorno, the Biancocelesti won comfortably away from home 3-0 and then again in the return match 1-0. In the Neapolitan clash, Internazionale Napoli prevailed over Naples 3-2 on aggregate.


In the first leg of the final, Lazio only won 1-0 at home but in the second they demolished Internazionale 8-0, qualifying for the national final for the second year running.


National final


It was clear to everybody that Casale was way stronger than Lazio and this is exactly what happened in the final. The Piedmontese crushed the Biancocelesti 7-1 in the first leg and won also in Rome 2-0.


It was however a great achievement for Lazio who were clearly the strongest team in the centre-south, but from a football point of view these clubs were still miles away from the rich northern ones and would be for quite some time.


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