Gigi Simoni, former coach of Inter, Napoli and Cremonese – La Gazzetta dello Sport, dies


The former Inter and Genoa coach passed away at the age of 81, he was in critical condition since last June

The gentleman coach leaves: always polite, never a screamed phrase, balance as the polar star of an entire career. On the contrary: of a lifetime. Gigi Simoni disappears at the age of 81 and carries a suitcase of memories from when he started to play football and did well enough until, sitting on the bench, he led the Phenomenon Ronaldo in his first Italian season with the ‘Inter.


He was not a champion on the field, even though Juve hired him in the summer of 1967, after having long negotiated for the purchase of Gigi Meroni. But in black and white he did not enchant and returned quickly to his beloved football province, because it is here that Simoni has always given his best. As a technician he linked his name to the Cremonese companies of the very president Domenico Luzzara: with the Lombards he also won an Anglo-Italian Tournament at Wembley.


And then the adventure, short but intense, at Inter: a season or a little more, but how many emotions. First of all the joy of being able to train the strongest player in the world, namely Ronaldo, and then the pride for having conquered the UEFA Cup, after having defeated Lazio in the final. But that experience is also marked by an episode that Simoni has never digested: the famous foul-no foul of Iuliano on Ronaldo, April 1998, the referee Ceccarini who does not grant the penalty, the controversies that ignite the environment and him who loses his temper and is expelled. Celebrating his eighties, last January, Simoni returned to the subject and, since Ceccarini even claimed that the foul was Ronaldo and not Iuliano, he turned to the now former referee: “Prove you are not very intelligent admitting an error that has been talked about for more than twenty years “. It was, throughout his career, the only time Simoni put aside the gentleman’s suit to go down to the ring.

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