Mass for Vialli in Cremona: in the church of Christ the King friends, former school and football mates


Mass for Vialli in Cremona: in the church of Christ the King friends, former school and football mates
Written by aquitodovale

Of Arianna Ravelli, sent to Cremona

The Mass in memory of Luca Vialli commissioned by the family attracted hundreds of Cremona citizens, exponents of the world of football, former schoolmates. From Roberto Bettega, to Ciro Ferrara, Fabrizio Ravanelli, Angelo Peruzzi, Michele Padovano

«What does a priest still have to add, who perhaps was a Juventus player in his youth, and who now knows the reality of Cremona, to all that has already been said about Gianluca Vialli? Instead, each of you can add something, because each of us lives in the others. And good things are transmitted by contagion. The bishop of Cremona Antonio Napolioni thus begins the homily of the Mass in memory of the city’s favorite son (who today proclaimed a day of mourning, the flags lowered, the images of Luca projected on the façade of the Town Hall, a minute’s silence in the offices audiences): and in effect the church of Cristo Re populates on this humid evening there are hundreds of Cremona residents, dozens of exponents from the world of football, friends, family members, former school mates, and endless memories because everyone has brought theirs with them and goes over them mentally to seek consolation, to get a smile snatched. Because yes, she smiles, too, and cries, of course.

The family gathered in the chapel to the right of the altar does it: the parents are not there, the father Gianfranco, 92, and the mother Maria Teresa, 85, stopped by the fever

, who stayed at home with their daughter Mila. There are the brothers, incredibly similar to Gianluca, Marco, Nino, Maffo, the nephews (one, Nino’s son, with the Sampdoria scarf), close friends, those of the «Zjg» who even organized a famous Festival with , songs and music at Villa Affaitati in Grumello Cremona, the home of the Vialli family. They never lost sight of each other in the name of Gianluca and now they too remember.

«The best sporting memory is winning the Champions League, I keep personal ones for myself» whispers Roberto Bettega, former footballer and former manager of Juventus, sitting on the bench with Ciro Ferrara (“Thank you Luca for the trip we made together, we drove around and had fun”), Fabrizio Ravanelli, Angelo Peruzzi, Michele Padovano. A little further on, Moreno Torricelli, Alessio Tacchinardi, Gianluca Pessotto who read a touching message for Luca the other day in Turin.

And then the Sampdoria of Pietro Vierchowod, Fausto Salsano, Bubu Evani, Attilio Lombardo (who was another son adopted by Cremona), Marco Branca, Gianluca Pagliuca, Marco Lanna (“I was just warming him up in the chairmanship, I told him so many times, unfortunately he didn’t manage to crown this dream”), Riccardo Ferri. And the Cremonese of those times with Roberto Bencina, Marco Nicoletti, Walter Viganò, Mario Montorfano who, in tears, read a message, recalling «the room in disorder at the limits of impracticability» that he shared with Gianluca in the summer retreats, and then of course «the education », «the smile», «the example», the most recurring words in this sad and at the same time serene memory. Because he weeps, of course, but he also smiles, as he would have liked.

They are all here for him, for Gianluca. Under the altar the shirts of his teams, Cremonese, Sampdoria, Chelsea, Juventus (the blue and yellow one of the victory in the Champions League) and the national teambehind are the boys from Corona calcio, the team of Christ the King where Gianluca had started kicking the ball, and in the front row the players from the Cremonese youth team and the President Giovanni Arvedi (the first team was involved in the same minutes on the field of Verona, with a special shirt for Gianluca who deserved a different performance), and close to him the mayor Gianluca Galimberti with the Councilor for Welfare of the Lombardy Region Guido Bertolaso.

«Gianluca is a man who in sport, in his family, in friendship has lived with a smile on his lips – continues the Bishop -, especially when life has gotten tough. Whoever faces difficulties head on, who reflects on it, who chooses how to fight against evil and manages to put this experience to good use offers a great lesson, Luca loved life so much that he always faced it like this, with this generous intelligence. Because I can give up on sickness, but never on desperation. It is played in Heaven not in the championship manner, with losers and winners every Sunday, but in the oratory manner, with endless shots on goal, in endless matches, because time is fulfilled in Heaven. Paradise resembles an oratory field». Up there Luca has already started shooting.

(article being updated)

January 9, 2023 (change January 9, 2023 | 22:22)

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