is a football (soccer) club from Italy.
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Calcio Catania is an Football in Italy club founded in 1908 and based in Catania, Sicily. The club has spent much of its history in Serie B, gaining promotion to Italy's top league Serie A five times. They currently compete in Serie A after climbing back up the football pyramid.
The club has achieved moderate success in the top league, the highest position ever reached by the club is 8th in Serie A twice, both during the early 1960s. The farthest Catania have progressed in cup competitions is the final of the Coppa delle Alpi.
The origins of football being played by representatives of the Province of Catania can be traced back to English cargo ships, thanks to the workers who brought the game to Sicily. Specifically the earliest Catania team can be traced to match which took place on 2 May 1901 at San Raineri di Messina
against Messina Football Club, the team was named Royal Yacht Catania; an English ship with a local Catanian crew.
The ship workers team was just a pastime however, Catania's first professional and most stable football club was founded on 19 June 1908, by Italian film director Gaetano Ventimiglia and Francesco Sturzo d'Aldobrando, who founded the club under the name A.S. Educazione Fisica Pro Patria. Early on they would always play against sailors visiting the port of Catania, particularly foreign ships. Though their first ever match was against Regina Margherita class battleship an Italian battleship, the game ended in a 1–1 draw and the Catania line-up that day consisted of; Vassallo, Gismondo, Bianchi, Messina, Slaiter, Caccamo, Stellario, Binning, Cocuzza, Ventimiglia and Pappalardo. Just two years later they changed the name to Unione Sportiva Catanese.
In the North of Italy, football was more organised and those clubs competed in the early Italian Football Championships, while Catania and other Southern clubs competed in competitions such as the Lipton, Sant' Agata and Agordad cups. U.S. Catanese survived the First World War and just after it played in the local Coppa Federale Siciliana. Seven seasons later in 1927 they were entered into the Campionato Catanese, which was won in the 1928–29 season. As they gained promotion the club were entered into the Second Division, and changed their name first to Società Sportiva Catania. They first competed in Serie B in the 1934–35 season where they finished 4th; that season Genoa Cricket & Football Club won the Serie B title.
Catania played in the league for 3 seasons during this period, before being relegated. Down in Serie C, Catania were crowned champions in the 1938–39 season, finishing above Sicilian rivals U.S. Siracusa and Messina (who came in 2nd and 3rd respectively). Their return to Serie B was not a pleasant one, the club finished bottom of the league and won only three games that season. The club's name was briefly changed to Associazione Calcio Fascista Catania during the 1942–43 season in Serie C, which ended prematurely because of the 2nd World War.
After World War II ended, a local competition was organised, the Campionato Siciliano. US Catanese were back; at the end of that season a local team named Elefante Catania were merged into the club. The merged club kept the Catanese name and competed in Serie C during the 1945–46 season, but finished last. In the same league that season a team called Virtus Catania were also present and finished 8th.
At the end of the season, Catanese and Virtus merged together to form Club Calcio Catania, with the first president as Santi Manganaro-Passanisi (who had been president of Catanese). They were entered into Serie C where they spent three seasons, after an epic duel with Reggina Calcio for first place Catania prevailed with stars such as Goffi, Messora, Ardesi and Prevosti, gaining promotion to Serie B during 1948–49.
The late 1950s through 1960s are considered the Golden age
for the Catanian club, as they managed to achieve promotion to Serie A on two separate occasions during this time. Their first promotion from Serie B came, when in the 1953–54 season Catania beat out Cagliari F.C. and Lombardy side Aurora Pro Patria 1919 to be crowned champions of the division. Their first season in Serie A, saw Catania achieve a respectable 12th place finish, but the club were forcibly relegated due to financial scandal (as were Udinese Calcio).
Under the management of Carmelo Di Bella (who had played for the club in the late '30s) Catania gained promotion from Serie B in the 1959–60 season. The race for promotion in third spot went down to the last day of the season and was very tense. Catania had lost their final game 4–2 to Brescia Calcio and needed Parma to get a good result against U.S. Triestina Calcio for the Sicilian club to secure promotion. That is exactly what happened and Catania had thus gained promotion once more.
Catania returned into Serie A for the 1960–61 season, to begin what would be a six-year stay in the league. Their return season was emphatic as the newly promoted club finished in 8th above top Italian clubs such as S.S. Lazio and S.S.C. Napoli. This season produced several notable wins; they beat Napoli and Bologna twice, U.C. Sampdoria 3–0 at home and most notably they beat AC Milan 4–3 in Sicily and then on the final day of the season they beat F.C. Internazionale Milano 2–0, with goals from Castellazzi and Calvanese. This rubbed the salt into the wounds of Inter who lost the closely contested title that year to Juventus F.C..
Four years later in 1965 they would also finish 8th in the league, this time above A.S. Roma and Sicilian rivals F.C. Messina Peloro. Many of the club's most notable stars played around this time, such as; midfielders Alvaro Biagini and the Brazilian Cinesinho, along with wingers Carlo Facchin and Giancarlo Danova in the side. Catania more than held their own amongst the giants of Italian football, with wins against Juventus (2–0), ACF Fiorentina (2–0) and Lazio (1–0).
Mixed fortunes in the '70s and '80s
After their relegation in 1966 Carmelo Di Bella left and Catania stayed in Serie B; clashing with U.S. Città di Palermo in the Sicilian derby before the Palermitan club were promoted. Catania followed in 1969–70 with a third place finish; though their stay in Serie A this time was very brief and they were relegated back down after one season. Their most impressive results that season was 3–1 win against Lazio and a draw at home against AC Milan, Catania lacked goalscorers at the time as they only scored 18 goals altogether in 30 games.
Notable former players
- Enzo Bearzot
- Amedeo Biavati
- Riccardo Carapellese
- Claudio Ranieri
- Ennio Mastalli
- Giovanni Vavassori
- Giuseppe Mascara
- Albano Bizzarri
- Mariano Andujar
- Luis Oliveira
- Johan Walem
- Pedro Luís Vicençote
- Juan Manuel Vargas
- Jorge Andres Martinez
Catania have had several presidents over the course of their history, some of which have been the owners of the club, others have been honorary presidents, here is a list of them from 1946 onwards.
- Location: Catania
- Capacity: 23,420
- Inauguration: 27 November 1937
- Pitch Size: 110 x 70 metres
Catania first made their debut at the Stadio Angelo Massimino, then called the Stadio Cibali in 1937. The stadium was renamed in honour of former president Angelo Massimino in 2002. Massimino had been president of the club from 1969 until his death in 1996.
It has been proposed that the club would move to a 33,765 seater stadium named Stadio Dèi Palici, which is to be located in the southern outskirts of the city of Catania in an industrial zone called Pantano d'Arci.
- Champions: 1953–54
- Promoted: 1959–60, 1969–70, 1982–83, 2005–06
Coppa delle Alpi
- Runners-up: 1964
Serie C / Serie C1
- Champions: 1938–39, 1947–48, 1948–49, 1974–75, 1979–80
- Promoted: 2001–02
- Champions: 1998–99
- Champions: 1994–95
- Promoted: 1993–94
Club records- Highest League Position: 8th, in the 1960–61 and 1964–65 seasons.
- Most League Appearances: 281, Damiano Morra between 1975 and 1984.
- Most League Goals: 47, Guido Klein and Adelmo Prenna.
- Most Serie A Appearances: 150, Giuseppe Vavassori between 1961 and 1966.
Name: Calcio Catania SpA
President: Antonino Pulvirenti
Manager: Diego Simeone
Address: Piazza Verga, 16 - 95129 Catania
Stadium: Angelo Massimino
Calcio Catania SpA