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Rivals: Juventus vs Torino | Derby della Mole

Manchester M writes about Derby della Mole, Juventus vs Torino

The Derby della Mole may not be the most broadcasted game in Serie A, but don’t let that fool you. Named after a famous landmark in the city of Turin, the Mole Antonelliana. The derby certainly leaves all of Turin, and the Northwest of Italy, captivated for a day. Despite the fact that one of the teams is a 32-time Serie A champion, Torino has won more than their fair share of Turin Derbies. Whenever these 2 sides meet, fans are in full voice, the mood is electric, and every goals sparks a hurricane of noise. Don’t let anyone fool you, Juventus versus Torino is a monster of a derby.

In 1897, Juventus was founded in the glorious city of Turin, as one of the oldest football clubs in Italy. It was established by students of a prestigious high school, the name of which has been lost to history. In its early years, Juventus was a higher class team, especially after enduring investments from the Agnelli family, a family that had a monopoly on cars in Italy and had connections with the many of the elites of Italy; it was also supported heavily by the aristocracy of the region.

Many of the lower class scoffed at the idea of supporting the same team that the ‘delicate’ rich supported. Enter Torino, founded in 1906. The working class joined forces with another team, Foot-Ball Club Torinese, to form Torino. Still, the club was still lacking money, until a Swiss investor named Alfred Dick stepped in, and Torino Football Club was born.

On the 13 of January 1907, the first match in this rivalry was played, it was also Torino’s first match as a football club. It is said Juventus fans locked Alfred Dick in the dressing room, barring him from watching the match, having to listen to updates from the players and staff.

After World War 2, the rivalry of the 2 clubs came to represent the class divide of post-war Italy. “Italians were now pitted against each other, sometimes forcing military officials to make extremely difficult choices.” stated Jim Heddlesten, a WWII historian. The differences in ideology among the social and economic classes of Italy was at an all-time high, differences that were were impossible to ignore. That divide only fueled the Derby della Mole, with the fans of Torino representing the proletariat and Juventus the bourgeoisie.

With the mass migration of people to Turin in the 1960s, the balance of fans supporting either team shifted. Remember Agnelli? Yup, he plays a role again. Often times the workers would work for his companies, mainly car manufacturer Fiat. As a result of working for Agnelli, they cheer for their bosses’ team Juventus. Torino, on the other hand, represent the ‘originals’, or the people who were in Turin from the start of the football club. Even now days, Torino has the majority of the local fanbase, whereas Juventus has more of a worldwide support.


The Grande Torino

In 1923, Juventus moved into a new stadium, helping them to a second Serie A title, one of 35. By 1930, Juventus had established themselves as a genuine footballing power, winning 5 Serie A titles in a row, a streak not dissimilar to their current one. In the face of all of Juventus’ trophies, it can be easy to forget Torino’s greatness.

In the 1940’s Torino had a spell of dominance in Italy so extraordinary the team is known as ‘Grande Torino’, or Great Torino. During this time, Juventus faltered, not winning a title in the decade. This Torino squad won 5 consecutive titles, equaling the previous record set by Juventus. The squad’s run of success, however,  came to a tragic end, as a plane carrying the team crashed, leaving no survivors.

After the tragedy, there were many problematic years for Torino, who began a slow decline through Italian football, eventually  leaving them relegated to Serie B. It would only last one year, and it sparked an almost immediate change at the club. Once they came back up, they started a rebuild. One player that was crucial to this, Luigi Meroni, changed Torino forever, playing a fluent and audacious brand of football before tragically dying at 24.

Following from this period, there came more dominance for the bianconeri during the Trapattoni era, which spanned a total of fourteen years in two spells. Juventus soon won their record twentieth title, allowing them an additional gold star on their kit. Players like Michel Platini and Paolo Rossi were thriving; it was a great time for Juventus, and their dominance continues till today, apart from the Calciopoli scandal, where Juventus were relegated to Serie B.

In this fierce derby there have been 236 games, across 8 competitions in their history. Juventus have won the majority, at 42%, or 100 victories. A grand total of 73 of these have come in the league (Serie A, Divisione Nazionale, and Prima Categoria);  the rest came from cup matches and European play. About 27% were draws, or 63 games. Torino has won about 31% of the games, or 73 matches, showing that despite Juventus’ reputation, the rivalry has hardly been one-sided.


Like many other derbies, Derby della Mole has had its fair share of hooliganism. Certain incidents in this derby are disgraceful, and don’t belong in the beautiful game, yet they are a reality of life. It simply shows how emotionally invested the people in Turin are to their 2 glorious clubs, of course should not be used as an excuse for hooliganism.

Before the derby in the 2007-2008 season, riots broke out, causing both fans and police to be injured. Chaos was widespread throughout parts of the city. Shops and cars were all vandalized, with hateful messages.

The 2 clubs met for the first time in three years in 2012 on December 1st, and to add to that it was the first derby being staged in Juventus Stadium. Before the kickoff, fans from both teams were arrested for vandalism and starting a fight. The match included a red card, as well as both Juventus and Torino being fined for offensive banners and destruction of toilets and seats.

Key Matches Down The Years

1938 Coppa Italia Final- In 1938, both Turin sides had reached the final of the Coppa Italia, a final played over two legs at the time. The first match was played in Torino’s stadium; Juventus struck first, on 23 minutes through Savino Bellini. Torino equalized in the 36th, with a goal by Walter D’Odorico, only to have their lead stolen back in the 72nd by Lodovico De Filippis. Bellini nailed seemingly shut the coffin in the 85th minute with a second, and the match ended 1-3, Juventus notching three vital away goals. The second leg was held in the Stadio Benito Mussolini, Juventus’ former stadium. Torino scored first, through Fioravente Baldi. Torino’s dream, though was stolen by Gianluigi Gabetti, who scored twice to lead Juventus to a 2-1 win, and securing them the Coppa Italia.

Campionato Alta Italia, Torino slams Juventus:

It was the first meeting of Juventus andTorino in the new formatted Italian League, Campionato Alta Italia, which was established during World War II, and lasted for only one year. It is safe to say the first match was well worth its ticket price, for Torino fans anyways. It started off quickly, with Torino scoring its first early. After that the goals kept spilling out, but not for Juventus. The match finished an impressive 5-0 win for Torino, boosting Torino’s goal difference and helping them win their mini-league, and qualify for the next round.

Coppa Italia Third place match: It was 1952, and both teams failed to reach the finals, losing to the likes of Fiorentina and Lazio. This pitted the two rivals together, for the third place match in this coveted competition in Italy. After 90 minutes the game was still in stalemate, at 2-2. The game went into extra-time, yet still no winner was decided. As a result the game went into penalty kicks, with Juventus taking the crown in a dramatic 5-4 win.

Juventus thrash Torino: It was a blistering night in Turin, but no one knew how great the match was going to be, for Juventus fans as well as neutrals wanting a great match. It was the first Derby Della Mole of the 1995/1996 season. It started out in only the third minute, Gianluca Vialli hitting the back of the net with a thumping header, and all of the Juventus fans going crazy. Only minutes later, Torino encountered a great chance, only to be kept out by the Juventus ‘keeper. Vialli smashed home another goal in the 26th, then added one more before half-time. A first half hat trick was great, but it only kept getting better. Two more goals were added before the end of the match securing a 5-0 win for Juventus.

Key Figures In The Derby

Giampiero Boniperti:

Giampiero Boniperti was regarded as one of Juventus’ as well as Italy’s best players ever. His trophy cabinet for Juventus includes 5 Serie A titles and 2 Coppa Italia titles, and on the Italian level he appeared in the 1950 and the 1954 World Cup finals and the 1952 Summer Olympics. Giampiero was born in 1928 and played his entire football career at Juventus from 1946-1961. He was also Juventus’s all time leading scorer for 40 years. His first match in the Juventus black and white came on March 2nd, 1947, a 2-1 loss to Sampdoria. His prolific strike rate made him the 11th-highest goalscorer in Serie A.

His loyalty to Juventus has also earned him the role as top Derby della Mole goalscorer, hitting the mark 14 times, making him hated among the Torino fans. Giampiero retired from playing football in 1961, but didn’t retire from the beautiful game itself. He became Juventus’s president in 1981, but even before then he was on Juventus executive board. Giampiero still resides today in Italy.

Giovanni Trapattoni:

Born in 1939, Giovanni Trapattoni played the majority of career in AC Milan where he won two Serie A titles and two European Cups. You might be wondering why a person who played for AC Milan is famous in the Derby della Mole, and the truth comes when you look at his managerial career.

Trapattoni started his talented spell as a manager as the AC Milan youth coach, only to transfer to Juventus. He was an instant hit, winning six Serie A titles, two Coppa Italia, an Intercontinental Cup, a Cup Winners’ Cup, a European Super Cup, and a UEFA Cup. A lesser-known fact that often gets hidden among his legacy, he has won the most Derby della Mole as a manager, at 13. The second-placed coach in the standings of Turin Derby managerial wins is Carlo Carcano, at only seven. Giovanni Trapattoni went on to manage clubs in numerous countries, becoming only 1 of 5 coaches that have won the title in 4 different European Leagues, along with the likes of Jose Mourinho and Carlo Ancelotti. Trapattoni currently resides in Vatican City, where he coaches the Vatican City National Team.

Gianluigi Buffon:

One of the living legends still playing the beautiful game, also happens to be a legend in the Derby della Mole. Buffon began his career in Parma, during 1995. He then moved in 2001 to Juventus where he resides today, as the starting goalkeeper. He even stayed with Juventus when they were relegated to Serie B, while many other stars left. His performances for Italy and Juventus have seen him amass a raft of major trophies, and he continues to impress even as his fortieth birthday approaches.

Valentino Mazzola:

Valentino Mazzola is a name not many people know of, but he holds a special place in Torino’s history. Born in January 1919 in a lower class neighborhood near Turin, Valentino’s early life was very tough, though he made the most of it. Valentino was a caring lad, who once threw himself into a river to help a young boy. Mazzola broke through the ranks at Tresoldi, and then moved to Alfa Romeo in 1938. He scored 18 goals there, before transferring to Venezia after only 1 year. He stayed in Venezia for 3 years, before he transferred to Torino in 1942.

Does that year seem familiar to you? If so, it is when the Grande Torino first started. He was the backbone of Torino’s great squad, playing as central attacking midfielder as well as a forward. He recorded the earliest goal in the derby, at little under a minute. “He alone is half the squad. The other half is made by the rest of us together”, said Mario Rigamonti on Valentino’s skill. Sadly, like the rest of that ream Mazzola died in 1949, when the airplane carrying the Grande Torino crashed at Superga.

Read all other articles from our Rivals series here

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