U.S._Pro_Vercelli_Calcio

U.S. Pro Vercelli Calcio

Unione Sportiva Pro Vercelli Calcio was one of the most successful Italian football clubs in the early decades of the twentieth century, with seven national titles won between 1908 and 1922. Based in Vercelli, Piedmont, the team currently plays in Italy's Lega Pro Seconda Divisione.

History

Foundation

The Società Ginnastica Pro Vercelli (Pro Vercelli Gymnastics Society) was established in 1892, with its Football Division founded in 1903. The first official match for the S.G. Pro Vercelli - Football Division took place on 3 August 1903 against the Forza e Costanza team from Novara.

1907 saw Pro Vercelli's football team win the Subs Division, and subsequently the club were admitted to Italian National League for the first time. Success followed quickly, with the following two years (1908 and 1909) producing the "White Shirts" first National championship titles.

Phenomenal success

A place was again earned in the 1909-10 Championship final, however, a disagreement arose with the Italian Football Federation (F.I.F. - nowadays F.I.G.C.) because of the arranged date, clashing with a previously scheduled match. Pro Vercelli chose to take part only with a youth team, eventually losing the title to Internazionale Milano.

Nevertheless, the Leoni ("Lions", so called for their notorious hard and not always clean tackles) did not take long to prove again their supremacy in Italian football. The following years they remain undefeated, with the unprecedented capture of three titles in a row in 1910-11, 1911-12 and 1912-13.

These years begat the legends of the famous Midfield Line of Wonders, formed by Ara, Milano I and Leone. In the same years Pro Vercelli also formed, the backbone of the first Italian national teams, with nine players representing the Piedmont club.

After such an incredible beginning, however, Pro Vercelli had to wait the end of the Great War and 1920-21 to win another National title. In the following years Pro Vercelli remained among the best Italian teams, but fell short of achieving the top prize. Other teams such as arch-rivals Casale, Genoa and Internazionale Milano overtook the "White Shirts", breaking a dominance not experienced before or since.

In 1921-22, after a row over the structure of the Italian league competition, the Italian Football Federation (FIGC) split, with all the major teams forming the independent Italian Football Confederation (C.C.I.). Pro Vercelli joined the CCI league, which had a structure with fewer matches over the year, subsequently and joyously regaining their 7th National title. Incredibly and unfortunately, it was to be their last - to date.

Pro Vercelli were invited to Rio de Janeiro to play against Flamengo and Botafogo. In the days before formalised European competition, Liverpool F.C., during a European tour as English Champions, played all the strongest team of the continent, defeating all except one: they could only manage to draw with Pro Vercelli in a clash of the finest sides in the world on the day.

Decline

This was the year that marked the beginning of the slow, but steady decline of Pro Vercelli. In 1934-35 the Bianche Casacche were eventually relegated to Serie B. The steady modernisation of the game saw the small town team drop to Serie C for the first time in 1940-41. She returned to Serie B in 1946 and stayed for 2 years. She played in regional league between 1948-1959 and 1962-1971. Pro Vercelli's Serie C campain was ended in 1977-78 season and relegated to Serie C2.

Recent history

In recent years, Pro Vercelli have been fairly stable at mid-table in the Italian fourth division (Serie C2). In July 2005 a new chairman, Vero Paganoni, took over at the helm of the club.

Current squad

Honours

Famous players

Italy

External links

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