Welcome to Volume Two of my blog paying homage to the football clubs I've visited all over the world and the wonderful people responsible for keeping them going and their maintenance.

Since I was a little lad I've been fascinated in football and more so where games are played. With my love of travel and curiosity of the game I wanted to visit as many grounds and see games wherever possible.

I was fortunate that my Dad also loved the game and spent so much of his spare time taking me to matches. As I got older the boundaries widened owing to my location and increased wages to Europe and indeed the world. The sight of a stand or a floodlight pylon in the distance immediately heightens my senses and eagerness for a closer look.

I hope this site gives you the chance to share in my pleasure and experiences and maybe one day set you on the road to adventure. If you get half as much out of the hobby as I've done, I can guarantee some great memories, good friends and stories to pass on to future generations.

Give your local club a try today. They'll be delighted to see you!

Everlasting thanks primarily to my late and very much missed and dearly loved parents; my Dad Bob Bernard and my Mum; Ann, who put up with endless years of football chat and my brothers Nick and Paul who gave me the chance and encouragement to do what I have. Thanks to all my friends who offer encouragement and Sally and Stan who inspire and give me great pride. Stan is showing a keen interest in my hobby as he grows into a young man!

Please feel free to post any comments (please use sensible language - I want everyone to be able to enjoy reading) or ask any questions relating to visiting grounds or events. If you want to see any ground reviewed please let me know. It will take quite some time for everywhere to appear, but make sure you keep having a look as the site is continually updated.

If you click on a lot of the pictures you will get a larger version on your screen.

I have also added links to video clips on YouTube where appropriate for those of you who are bored of reading or are filling in time at work. I haven't always gone for the most obvious choices, but items that will be in some cases unusual but always historically interesting.

Click to see volume one of HAOTW.

Rob Bernard


November 2018

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

ASD Cenisia (Italy)

ASD Cenisia is an amateur football club from the northern Italian city of Turin who were formed on the 13th April 1919 with Mr Montù becoming the first club President.

‘The Violets’ moved to a ground where Corso Rosselli now stands as the Borgo San Paulo club built a rivalry with Guerin, Vanchiglia and Virtus. Cenisia won three metropolitan titles with up to a thousand supporters attending matches before World War Two.

During the conflict the team continued to play but had to scarper when the sounds of the air raid siren went off. Problems arose after war with the Rosselli venue. The club played at Corso Francia, near to the railway in Collegno before player Teresio Dutto managed to get permission for the club to use land between Via Frejus and Corso Vittorio Emanuele.

Dutto and his companions moved in to work tirelessly to use their skills to build the current the current Cenisia Campo Via Cesana 12.

Mr Gatto became President and instilled professionalism and prestige coaches to Cenisia as well as introducing a youth system which began to flourish between 1954 and 1963. In 1953-54 the first team containing Pietro Battara who would go on to star for L.R. Vicenza, Sampdoria and Bologna, won a championship and promotion as the club prepared to go semi-professional.

In 1958 Cenisia won a national cup in 1958 under technical director Fusero. At the end of 50’s the youth players at the club pushed through into the first team in readiness for another exciting period. In 1961 ‘Ceni’ lifted their third national title.

In 1962 when Ceni had returned to the amateur ranks, they won the national Junior cup (for teams of that level) as they defeated Quadraro Roma 2-0 in the final which was played in Florence. However, tragedy was about to hit the club in 1964.

Both player Molinari Dario Borgogno and President Cillario were to perish in separate car accidents. Cillario had set up a great partnership with city giants Torino, which ended in 1967. Ceni went downhill quickly, with no-one filling the giant shoes of Cillario.

In 1964, Corrado Parlagreco had set up another local club called Europa. The club were well run and financially stable. In 1969 the two clubs merged to become Europa Cenisia. New volunteers came forward as the new set up stabilised. In 1977 Parlagreco departed and the club returned to its original title.

Former Olympian clay pigeon shooter Ediliano Mazzoni took control of the club and formed a new committee.  He moved aside in the late 80’s as a merger was formed with the Club Nephenta di Bersano sports association.

The club was under threat again in the 1994-95 season, which the new President, Luigi Riccetti set about resolving. Youth development was once again given impetus while players were encouraged to stay with partnerships with sister companies being developed to make staying with Cenisia more attractive.

All the teams at the club earned success with the student team lifting the Coppa Piemonte Allievi in 1997-98. The first team won promotion to the 1e Catogorie with a play off final win when Virtus Mondovi were defeated 2-0 in 2005.

The club reached the fifth tier of Italian football, the Eccellenza Piemonte-Valle d'Aosta as U.S.D. Sporting Cenisia for the 2012-13 season, where they were placed in Group B finishing bottom. They ended the 2013-14 season in the same position and were relegated to Girone D of the Promozione Piemonte-Valle d'Aosta.

ASD Censia will play in the Promozione Piemonte-Valle d'Aosta Girone D in the 2015-16 season.

My visit

Wednesday 3rd February 2016

The mist was beginning to clear over Turin, which left me hopeful of an afternoon visit up to Superga before that evening’s Serie A match between Juventus and Genoa. I had taken the opportunity to visit three of the city’s non-league amateur clubs and after calling it at A.C.D. Lucento it was time to head back towards the city.

After alighting at the top of Corso Svizzera, I found a charming local food street market and even used a supermarket for pastries, which was an experience all of its own! I was soon crossing Corso Vittorio Emanuele and heading down Via Caprie when the stadium came to view in front of me.

There was a park in front of the open stand which contained the I Soliti Ignoti café. I walked down Via Revello behind one end but could not see an entrance. An abandoned building on the corner of the ground in total disrepair had me concerned that the ground was no longer in use.

I made my way round the far end on Via Cesana where the gate was shut. There was also a door for post, but it didn’t appear like I’d be getting anywhere close to entry. Using my nous I stood on a wall on the opposite side of the road, which gave me some limited photo opportunities.

My previous experiences told me never to give up, and sure enough I once again found a way. The park was open and the rear staircases to the stand were accessible. They were fenced at the top, but I got to see the venue in its full splendour.

The stand had bucket seats and was raised above pitch level. It ran the full length of the artificial surfaced pitch. Opposite in the far corner by the entrance was a small raised covered stand with club buildings. Aside from the dug outs there was nothing else, with a wall enclosing the arena. It was the same behind both goals. Neither had spectator access.

I was pretty pleased to tick off three of Turin’s lesser clubs in a morning. Cenesia had been the pick of them. I walked to the Rivoli metro station where I took the number 2 bus down to Parco Ruffini to do some serious reminiscing. You can read all about it here.

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