Gian Luca Mignogna: “Lazio’s Rights Were Trampled On”
After Steven Moore – the Founder and owner of The Laziali – interviewed Gian Luca Mignogna about the 1915 Scudetto in April 2020, Dutch news outlet NOS Sport has followed suit. In an attempt to further understand the lawyer’s thoughts about the title, and to make it clear that Lazio’s rights were clearly trampled on, below is the complete interview.
“Since my childhood, I have collected almanacs, yearbooks, and statistical and historical books. That’s how I found out that something was wrong with the 1914/15 season.”
“History says that sometime between 1919 and 1921, the Italian Football Federation assigned the 1915 Scudetto to Genoa. This, however, is not true. The Official FIGC Yearbook of 1926/27 clearly states that the season had been suspended. So it is not possible that a National Champion could have been nominated.”
Mignogna has spent the past five years researching the season in question. On May 24, 2015, exactly one hundred years after Italy entered World War I, he proposed his discoveries to the Italian Football Federation.
“In my opinion, the 1915 Scudetto should be assigned to both Genoa and Lazio, as these were the two teams that most likely would have played against each other for the title. But the Italian Football Federation initially asked for further evidence.”
“With a group of historians, as modern archaeologists, we engaged in research. An in 2017 we included everything in a book: ‘Lo Scudetto Spezzato: Storia di un Campionato Mai Terminato’, which today, however, should be updated.”
The Scudetto refers to the emblem with the Italian flag that the club who is the ‘Champion of Italy’ can wear on its shirts. In the 1914/1915 season, however, the Scudetto emblem still did not exist. But almost ten years later in 1924, Genoa entered the field for the first time with the Scudetto on its chest. The turning point of this persisting misunderstanding was found in the newspaper L’Italia Sportiva; this Roman sports newspaper was the official newspaper of the Italian Football Federation at this point in time and stated that Lazio was only the Champion of Central and Southern Italy, which was true. However, the northern Italian newspaper La Gazzetta dello Sport stated that not only was Genoa the Champions of Northern Italy, but of the whole nation. This was clearly a mistake, according to Mignogna. As La Gazzetta dello Sport started to become increasingly influential in the country, L’Italia Sportiva quickly disappeared into silent oblivion, and with it every claim made by Lazio for the 1915 Scudetto.
About a year after Mignogna had presented his conclusions to the Italian Football Federation, the lawyer’s thesis had been endorsed by a Commission of Experts. Everyone thought that the mystery would be solved. But it didn’t happen.
“All decisions were postponed until a successor to the former President (Carlo Tavecchio) was found. Subsequently, the new President (Gabriele Gravina) appointed a new Commission of Experts in June 2019.”
“We handed over our 3,000-page dossier and expected a decision to be made in early 2020. But then the emergence of the Coronavirus broke out…”
Mignogna strongly hopes that this 2019/20 season won’t end in a nightmare, similar to the 1914/1915 season:
“The resumption of Serie A could also be a pleasant distraction for the Italians. However, health comes first.”
“Nobody can predict how long we will remain under the effects of Coronavirus. But one day, this Serie A season will be able to start again. And Lazio will have great chances to win their third Scudetto – or rather their fourth.”