Originally published in la Gazzetta dello Sport
Every week Football Italiano brings you a translation of one of la Gazzetta dello Sport’s interviews with a major name from the world of Italian football. This time it is the turn of Fiorentina owner Diego Della Valle…
Diego Della Valle
On Saturday night you asked very politely the referee Roberto Rosetti to watch the video of Milan-Fiorentina. On his own. And afterwards, to let you know how he had refereed. You’ve waited for two days, certain that a sign would have come along. Silence instead.
“This silence worries us. Rosetti himself could have said ‘It’s true, there should have been a penalty in Fiorentina’s favour’. Think how nice, a referee admitting he was wrong. It would have been an extraordinary example. Alternatively, a message could have also come from Collina. He has intervened publicly more than once to admit the mistakes made by his ‘pupils’, and to explain the reasons behind their wrong decisions. Nothing instead. Only silence. A silence that offends us. That mistake in San Siro was too evident, it can’t be erased”.
This silence worries you.
“We are not asking for punishments or suspensions. Fiorentina only asked for the acknowledgement for a wrong we suffered. Then, it’s up to Collina whether to suspend a referee or not. A referee hasn’t necessarily got to be stopped. To make mistakes is human. But this silence makes us suspect that San Siro’s mistake has already been forgotten. And we can’t allow it”.
A mistake which follows other mistakes.
“Shall we talk about Lecce’s two off-side goals? In the last two games a series of huge mistakes cost us six points. What we ask of referees, whom we have always had great respect for, is more attention in the future. We are aiming for the Champions League. We can’t afford such mistakes that, although I believe made in good faith, caused us many problems”.
Maybe in this football what pays is to raise one’s voice.
“I hope not. It would be very sad. Or perhaps it is so. Zamparini castigated a very good lad such as Gilardino for the goal against Palermo. He went through a moral lynching he’s still paying the consequences of. The Della Valle family have their own style, and will keep on defending him. But we don’t want to seem too good. It’s only right to fight for a different football”.
What do you mean?
For a serious and peaceful football. What I said about referees doesn’t concern Fiorentina only. It concerns every club. To raise one’s voice, or worse, to bawl and demand punishments, shouldn’t pay. This is our project and we want to carry it on”.