The story of the most loyal footballer in the world
Alessandro Lucarelli: the most loyal footballer in the world
Alessandro Lucarelli is an Italian former footballer who played football for 22 years. Some of his teams were US Palermo, Fiorentina, Livorno, Genoa CFC, and finally Parma, the team with which he would make history.
After several seasons alternating between Serie A and Serie B (Italian second division), Alessandro joined Parma Football Club in 2008, which at that time, played in Serie B. That season, they obtained the long-awaited promotion after being in second place, thanks to 76 points in 42 games.
In the following seasons in Serie A, the club made regular seasons, enough not to be in the last places of the Italian league. However, the financial situation of the club got worse and worse and became completely unsustainable. Unfortunately, in the 2014-15 season, Parma declared bankruptcy and officially ceased to exist. However, the club was refunded under the name of Parma Calcio 1913 but, on the condition to start again from Serie D, the highest category of amateur football in Italy.
Almost all Parma players left the club and continued their careers in other teams. All but one, the captain. Alessandro Lucarelli decided to stay. "When the sad future of the club was beginning to be resolved, I said that I was going to be in Serie D. I have died with Parma and I want to be reborn with Parma. Although I am already 38, I received calls to continue in Serie A but, it's something that doesn't interest me".
Despite having a completely new team, Lucarelli led the team and was promoted to Lega Pro. Despite his age, he played 38 games and scored 2 goals. In the following season, Parma made the impossible possible again and gained promotion to Serie B. In that season, Lucarelli played 42 games and scored 1 goal. On June 28, 2017, a few days before his 40th birthday, Lucarelli signed for one more year to take the team back to Serie A.
Finally, in the 2017/2018 season, Parma and Alessandro Lucarelli did it. With 72 points from 42 games, they were equal on points with Frosinone, but thanks to the goal difference, they achieved direct promotion to Serie A. That season, he played 33 games and scored 4 goals.
In the history of Italian football, never before has a team obtained three consecutive promotions in three different categories. "It's incredible. A dream. We didn't even think it was going to be like that. I can now retire happy", assured the defender after fulfilling his promise. As homage to its hero, the club decided to retire the number 6.
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