Bankrupt Parma FC set to drop to Serie D

Parma FC are set to drop into Serie D, the top tier of Italy's amateur leagues, after administrators received no takeover offers prior to a 1400 (1200 GMT) deadline on Monday.

Bankrupt Parma FC set to drop to Serie D
The entrance of the Parma FC training centre in Collecchio near Parma. Photo: Giuseppe Cacace/AFP

Parma ended a nightmarish 2014-2015 campaign bottom of the Serie A table having been deducted points on several occasions for the club's failure to pay players and staff as they sunk into the financial doldrums.

They were declared bankrupt in March and went into administration pending the search for investors to take over the club and pay off its debts.

Despite automatically dropping into Serie B — Italy's second division — the club's failure to find a buyer mean they are set to drop into Serie D, the top tier of non-professional football in Italy.

American-Italian Mike Piazza and Italian Giuseppe Corrado were reported to be heading separate takeover bids in recent days.

But Corrado walked away from talks on Sunday night, and on Monday morning La Gazzetta dello Sport reported that Piazza had also ended his interest in buying the club.

“It is with great sadness and regret that I have to announce the end of talks to purchase Parma FC,” said Piazza according to the Italian sports daily.

Parma had released a club statement on Saturday, which read: “Administrators Dr. Angelo Anedda and Dr. Alberto Guion announce that the deadline for submission of valid offers to buy the company is scheduled for 14.00 (1200 GMT) on Monday, June 22nd.

“In the afternoon of the same day the administrators will meet with the Committee of Creditors and the bankruptcy judge, Dr. Pietro Rogato, in order to take any appropriate decision on the future of the club.”

If confirmed, it would be a spectacular fall from grace for the club that punched above its weight to challenge for Serie A honours in the 1996-1997 season.

Parma have never won the league title in Italy's top flight but during their 1992-2002 heyday claimed seven trophies including two UEFA Cups, three Italian Cups, a European Super Cup and the Cup Winners' Cup.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.


Euro 2020: Concern about virus spread after Italy players’ ‘unauthorised’ victory parade through Rome

Italy’s national football team reportedly insisted on taking an open-top bus tour through Rome to show off their European Championship trophy to crowds of fans - despite city authorities forbidding it amid concern about the spread of coronavirus.

Euro 2020: Concern about virus spread after Italy players' ‘unauthorised’ victory parade through Rome
Photo: Tiziana Fabi/AFP

The team’s bus parade through the city on Monday night following their Euro 2020 triumph “was not authorised”, according to Matteo Piantedosi the head of Rome’s prefettura (the public safety authority).

Thousands of fans packed the streets of central Rome to see the team celebrate their cup win after beating England on penalties in the final.

READ ALSO: ‘Football came home’: Italy celebrates Euro 2020 victory over England

Piantedosi told Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera on Wednesday: “We had denied permission to celebrate Italy’s victory in the European Championships on the open bus, but the pact was not respected.”

Piantedosi, who is Rome’s top public security official, said police had “no choice” but to let the parade go ahead after players Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci insisted on it.

Photo: Vincenzo Pinto/AFP

A meeting had been held on Friday with the Italian football federation (FIGC) to discuss plans for the celebrations if Italy won, said Piantedosi.

“I had agreed the line with Interior Minister Luciana Lamorgese and Chief of Police Lamberto Giannini,” he said.

“It was clearly explained that [the parade] was not possible. We said we could not authorize it.”

Piantedosi said the Italian football federation (FIGC) initially agreed to hold a “controlled” ceremony in Rome’s central Piazza del Popolo instead of the parade.

After players insisted on the bus tour on Monday however, Piantedosi said, authorities reluctantly let them go ahead due to fears of sparking public disorder.

“At that point we had no choice but to acknowledge the situation and handle it in the best way we could,” he said.

READ ALSO: Covid cases on the rise in Europe once again as WHO warns of Euro 2020 risk

Photo: Andreas Solaro/AFP

In a statement on Wednesday, the FIGC said it had acted responsibly but decided not to disappoint fans who had come to celebrate with the team.

Footage of large crowds thronging the bus carrying the ‘Azzurri’ and the European Championship trophy through the capital however fuelled concerns about new outbreaks of coronavirus, after Italy’s infection rate began to rise again last week.

The World Health Organization warned earlier this month that crowds and gatherings connected to football matches will fuel a new rise in cases across Europe this summer.

READ ALSO: Delta variant in Italy will be ‘prevalent within 10 days’: health official

Italy’s health minister Roberto Speranza also voiced concerns on Monday about the consequences of people gathering to watch sporting events.

He said the European football championship win was “a great joy after terrible months,” but “even in these moments of national pride we can’t forget that our ‘game’ to defeat Covid is not yet won.”

There are currently minimal health restrictions in place across Italy, however masks are supposed to be worn in crowded public places, including outdoors.

“Footage shows that police were virtually the only ones [in the crowd] wearing masks,” said Piantedosi.