U.C. Sampdoria

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U.C. Sampdoria logo.svg
Full nameUnione Calcio Sampdoria S.p.A.
Nickname(s)I Blucerchiati (The Blue-circled)
La Samp'
Il Doria
Founded12 August 1946; 73 years ago (1946-08-12)
GroundStadio Luigi Ferraris
ChairmanMassimo Ferrero
Head CoachClaudio Ranieri
LeagueSerie A
2018–19Serie A, 9th
WebsiteClub website
Current season
The progress of Sampdoria in the Italian football league structure since the club's foundation in 1946.

Unione Calcio Sampdoria, commonly referred to as Sampdoria (Italian pronunciation: [sampˈdɔːrja]), is an Italian professional football club based in Genoa, Liguria.

The club was formed in 1946 from the merger of two existing sports clubs whose roots can be traced back to the 1890s, Sampierdarenese and Andrea Doria.

Both the team name and jersey reflect this, the first being a combination of the former names, the second incorporating the former teams' colours (blue-white and white-red-black) in a single design. The team's colours are blue with white, red and black hoops, hence the nickname blucerchiati ("blue-circled"). Sampdoria play at Stadio Luigi Ferraris, capacity 36,536,[1] which it shares with Genoa's other club, Genoa Cricket and Football Club. The derby between the two teams is commonly known as the Derby della Lanterna.

Sampdoria have won the Scudetto once in their history, in 1991. The club has also won the Coppa Italia four times, in 1985, 1988, 1989 and 1994, and the Supercoppa Italiana once, in 1991. Their biggest European success came when they won the Cup Winners' Cup in 1990. They also reached the European Cup final in 1992, losing the final 1–0 to Barcelona after extra time.


The Ginnastica Sampierdarenese was founded in 1891, opening its football section in 1899. Named to honour Andrea Doria, a club named Society Andrea Doria was founded in 1895, which increasingly focused itself on football training and competition.

Andrea Doria: early league participation[edit]

Andrea Doria did not participate in the first Italian Football Championship which was organised by the Italian Federation of Football (FIF) since instead they had enrolled themselves into a football tournament which was organised by the Italian Federation of Ginnastica. The club eventually joined the competition for the 1903 Italian Football Championship, but did not win a game in the tournament until 1907, when they beat local rivals Genoa 3–1.

It was not until 1910–11 that the club began to show promise. During that season's tournament, they finished above Juventus, Internazionale and Genoa in the Piedmont-Lombardy-Liguria section.

Early photograph of Andrea Doria players

Post-World War I[edit]

After World War I Sampierdarenese finally began to compete in the Italian Championship, after they bought a pre-war club of Genoa province: Pro Liguria of Bolzaneto. Thus, Samp and Doria met in the championship for the first time; Doria won in first-leg game (4–1 and 1–1), and they also arrived at second place after Genoa in the Ligurian Championship, qualifying for the National Round.

With the 1921–22 season, the Italian top league was split into two competitions; both of the clubs in Sampdoria's history were in separate competitions that year too. Sampierdarenese played in the FIGC-run competition, whereas Andrea Doria played in the CCI variation.

Sampierdarenese won the Ligura section and then went on to the semi-finals, finishing top out of three clubs; this led them to the final against Novese. Both legs of the final ended in 0–0 draws, thus a repetition match was played in Cremona on 21 May 1922. Still intensely difficult to separate, the match went into extra time with Novese eventually winning the tie (and the Championship) 2–1.

After the league system in Italy was brought back into one item, Sampierdarenese remained stronger than Andrea Doria by qualifying for the league. By 1924–25, the clubs were competing against each other in the Northern League; Doria who finished one place above their rivals and won one match 2–1, while Sampierdarenese were victorious 2–0 in the other. At the end of the 1926–27 season, the clubs merged by fascist authorities under the name La Dominante.

La Dominante Genova split: 1930s[edit]

Wearing green and black striped shirts, La Dominante Genova were admitted to the first ever season of Serie B, where they finished third, just missing out on promotion. The next season, under the name Liguria, they had a disastrous year, finishing bottom of the table and suffering relegation.

Because of this, both Sampierdarenese and Andrea Doria reverted to their previous names as separate clubs. Sampierdarenese were back in Serie B for the 1932–33 season and finished in the upper part. The following year, they were crowned champions and were promoted into Serie A for the first time. Andrea Doria, on the other hand, battled out the 1930s down in Serie C.

15 July 1937 saw Sampierdarenese merging with Corniglianese and Rivarolese, with the club using the name Associazione Liguria Calcio. This saw them reach fifth place in Serie A in 1939. In the early 1940s, the club was relegated but bounced straight back up as Serie B champions in 1941.


Sampdoria in the late 1940s

After World War II, both clubs were competing in Serie A, but in a reverse of pre-war situations, Andrea Doria were now the top club out of the two. However, on 12 August 1946, a merger occurred to create Unione Calcio Sampdoria. The first chairman of this new club was Piero Sanguineti, but the ambitious entrepreneur Amedeo Rissotto soon replaced him, while the first team coach during this period was a man from Florence named Giuseppe Galluzzi. To illustrate the clubs would be equally represented in the new, merged club, a new kit was designed featuring the blue shirts of Andrea Doria and the white, red and black midsection of Sampierdarenese. In the same month of the merger, the new club demanded they should share the Stadio Luigi Ferraris ground with Genoa. An agreement was reached, and the stadium began hosting Genoa's and Sampdoria's home matches.

European and domestic successes[edit]

In 1979, the club, then playing Serie B, was acquired by oil businessman Paolo Mantovani (1930–1993), who invested in the team to bring Sampdoria to the top flights. In 1982, Sampdoria made their Serie A return and won their first Coppa Italia in 1985. In 1986, Vujadin Boškov was appointed as the new head coach. The club won their second Coppa Italia in 1988, being admitted to the 1988–89 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup, where they reached the final, losing 2–0 to Barcelona.[2][3] A second consecutive triumph in the Coppa Italia gave Sampdoria a spot in the 1989–90 Cup Winners' Cup, which they won after defeating Anderlecht after extra time in the final. This was followed only one year later by their first (and, as of the 2017–18 season, only) Scudetto, being crowned as Serie A champions with a five-point advantage over second-placed Internazionale. The winning team featured several notable players, such as Gianluca Pagliuca, Gianluca Vialli, Roberto Mancini, Toninho Cerezo, Pietro Vierchowod and Attilio Lombardo, with Boškov as head coach. In the following season, Sampdoria reached the European Cup final and were defeated once again by Barcelona, at Wembley Stadium.

Since this period, Sampdoria have made a limited number of appearances in European cup competitions. During the 1994–95 campaign, they reached the semi-finals of the 1994–95 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup before being eliminated on penalties in a memorable tie against Arsenal. The club also participated in the 1997–98 UEFA Cup but were eliminated by Athletic Bilbao in the first round. The 2005–06 season also proved to be a significant one, with Sampdoria returning to European competition for the first time since their promotion back to Serie A, with the club narrowly missing out on UEFA Champions League qualification, instead entering the UEFA Cup. During this campaign, the team was minutes away from qualification to the round of 32 when Lens eliminated them following a 2–1 defeat. The club also took part in the 2007–08 UEFA Cup, entering via the UEFA Intertoto Cup. However, it was a short and disappointing campaign, with Sampdoria being eliminated on the away goals rule by Aalborg BK in the first round. Participation in recent seasons in the UEFA Europa League was marked by several defeats by Metalist Kharkiv and lack of consistent play.

Decline and resurgence[edit]

On 14 October 1993, Paolo Mantovani died suddenly and was replaced by his son Enrico. During Enrico Mantovani's first season (1993–94), Sampdoria won one more Coppa Italia and placed third in Serie A. During the following four seasons, many players from his father's tenure left the club but many important acquisitions were made which kept Sampdoria in the top tier Serie A. This included the likes of Enrico Chiesa; Argentine internationals Juan Sebastián Verón and Ariel Ortega; loan signing Vincenzo Montella; and international midfielders Clarence Seedorf and Christian Karembeu.

Despite this, in May 1999 Sampdoria were relegated from Serie A and did not return to the top flight until 2002. Around this time, Sampdoria was acquired by Riccardo Garrone, an Italian oil businessman. Two of Garrone's most important initial moves were to inject new cash into the club and to appoint Walter Novellino as head coach. Sampdoria returned to Serie A in 2003 led by talisman Francesco Flachi, and ended their first season in eighth place. In the 2004–05 Serie A, they lost a spot in the UEFA Champions League to Udinese in the final matchdays of the season, ending in fifth place. This was followed by a poor season. Notwithstanding, Novellino was confirmed for one more season and Sampdoria ended the 2006–07 Serie A campaign in ninth place. As the eighth-placed team in Serie A were not granted a UEFA licence, Sampdoria was able to enter the 2007 UEFA Intertoto Cup as a result. Novellino announced his farewell to Sampdoria soon after, with Walter Mazzarri unveiled shortly after as his replacement.

The 2007–08 campaign started very early for Sampdoria due to qualifying rounds. They defeated Cherno More Varna in the Intertoto Cup and Hajduk Split in the second qualifying round of the UEFA Cup, before themselves being eliminated in the first round proper by Aalborg BK on away goals. The club took actively part in the transfer market, persuading Vincenzo Montella to make a comeback at Samp and signing Antonio Cassano from Real Madrid on loan; Cassano, having had such a successful loan period, was signed permanently for the 2008–09 campaign. During the winter transfer window, Giampaolo Pazzini was signed and formed one of Serie A's most effective strike partnerships with Cassano. Sampdoria ended the season in sixth position in Serie A and qualified for the 2008–09 UEFA Cup. The following season, they qualified for the UEFA Champions League play-offs.

With the departure of CEO Giuseppe Marotta, head coach Luigi Delneri, both of whom were credited with Samp's recent successes, as well as the loss of top scorers Cassano and Pazzini, and the squad being stretched by Champions League football, Sampdoria embarked on a miserable run of results and were relegated to Serie B after loss 2–1 at home to Palermo in May 2011.

However, in the following season, Sampdoria won the playoffs after defeating Varese 1–0 in the final return of the play-off after the 3–2 of the first round and return to Serie A. They were the first club outside of the third place to win the play-off, as well as the first sixth-placed club to do so. In the club's first few seasons back in Serie A, the side achieved consecutive mid-table finishes but continued its reputation of producing quality young players and subsequently selling them for significant transfer fees, including Shkodran Mustafi, Mauro Icardi, Andrea Poli and Simone Zaza.

After sixth-placed Genoa in the 2014–15 season failed to obtain a UEFA license for the 2015–16 UEFA Europa League season, seventh-placed Sampdoria took their spot.[4]

In the 2015/2016 Serie A season, Sampdoria finished a disappointing 15th place on the table. In the following 2 seasons, Sampdoria finished 10th on the table missing out on European qualification. Sampdoria striker Fabio Quagliarella finished the 2017/2018 campaign with 19 goals which was the third highest in the division.[5]


Current squad[edit]

As of 8 October 2019[6]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1 Indonesia GK Emil Audero
3 Italy DF Tommaso Augello (on loan from Spezia)
4 England MF Ronaldo Vieira
5 Germany DF Julian Chabot
6 Sweden MF Albin Ekdal
7 Poland MF Karol Linetty
8 Paraguay MF Édgar Barreto
9 Italy FW Federico Bonazzoli
10 Argentina MF Emiliano Rigoni (on loan from Zenit)
11 Uruguay MF Gastón Ramírez
12 Italy MF Fabio Depaoli
13 France MF Mohamed Bahlouli
14 Czech Republic MF Jakub Jankto
15 The Gambia DF Omar Colley
17 Italy FW Gianluca Caprari
No. Position Player
18 Norway MF Morten Thorsby
19 Italy DF Vasco Regini
20 Argentina MF Gonzalo Maroni (on loan from Boca Juniors)
21 Colombia DF Jeison Murillo (on loan from Valencia)
22 Italy GK Andrea Seculin (on loan from Chievo)
23 Italy FW Manolo Gabbiadini
24 Poland DF Bartosz Bereszyński
25 Italy DF Alex Ferrari
26 France MF Mehdi Léris
27 Italy FW Fabio Quagliarella (captain)
29 Italy DF Nicola Murru
30 Italy GK Wladimiro Falcone
33 Brazil DF Kaique Rocha
35 Italy GK Lorenzo Avogadri (on loan from Atalanta)
91 Italy MF Andrea Bertolacci

Other players under contract[edit]

As of 2 September 2019

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
Spain DF Álex Pastor
Italy MF Roberto Criscuolo
No. Position Player
Senegal FW Ibourahima Baldé

On loan[edit]

As of 23 September 2019

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
Slovenia GK Vid Belec (at APOEL until 30 June 2020)
Italy DF Leonardo Benedetti (at Spezia until 30 June 2020)
Italy DF Axel Campeol (at Vis Pesaro until 30 June 2020)
Brazil DF Dodô (at Cruzeiro until 31 December 2019)
Italy DF Tommaso Farabegoli (at Vis Pesaro until 30 June 2020)
Montenegro DF Cristian Hadžiosmanović (at Monopoli until 30 June 2020)
Italy DF Filippo Oliana (at Rimini until 30 June 2020)
Italy DF Carlo Romei (at Vis Pesaro until 30 June 2020)
Croatia DF Lorenco Šimić (at HNK Rijeka until 30 June 2020)
Italy MF Leonardo Capezzi (at Albacete until 30 June 2020)
No. Position Player
Italy MF Alessandro Gabbani (at Vis Pesaro until 30 June 2020)
Italy MF Antonio Palumbo (at Ternana until 30 June 2020)
Italy MF Michele Rocca (at Livorno until 30 June 2020)
Montenegro MF Ognjen Stijepović (at Pistoiese until 30 June 2020)
Italy MF Andrea Tessiore (at Vis Pesaro until 30 June 2020)
Italy MF Valerio Verre (at Hellas Verona until 30 June 2020)
Italy FW Antonio Di Nardo (at Vis Pesaro until 30 June 2020)
Albania FW Giacomo Vrioni (at Cittadella until 30 June 2020)
Colombia FW Duván Zapata (at Atalanta until 30 June 2020)

Managerial history[edit]

Colours, badge and nicknames[edit]

The club crest features a sailor in profile known by the old Genoese name of Baciccia, which translates to Giovanni Battista in Italian or John-Baptist in English. The image of a sailor is appropriate due to Sampdoria being based in the port city of Genoa.

The white, blue, red and black colours represent the club's origins with a merger between two teams, Sampierdarenese and Andrea Doria, who wore respectively red/black and white/blue jerseys with a shield with Saint-George cross.[7]

Supporters and rivalries[edit]

Sampdoria fans in the Gradinata Sud of the Stadio Luigi Ferraris

Sampdoria supporters come mainly from the city of Genoa. The biggest group are Ultras Tito Cucchiaroni, named after an Argentinian left winger who played for Sampdoria. The group were founded in 1969, making it one of the oldest ultra groups in Italy. They are apolitical, although there are smaller groups like Rude Boys Sampdoria, who are left-wing. The main support with flags and flares comes from the southern Curva, Gradinata Sud.

Sampdoria's biggest rivals are Genoa, against whom they play the Derby della Lanterna.[8] When Sampdoria were relegated from Serie A in 2011, more than 30,000 Genoa supporters staged a mock funeral procession through the streets of the city carrying a coffin draped in blue.[9]

Recent seasons[edit]

The recent season-by-season performance of the club:

Season Division Tier Position
1995–96 Serie A I 8th
1996–97 Serie A 6th
1997–98 Serie A 9th
1998–99 Serie A 16th ↓
1999–00 Serie B II 5th
2000–01 Serie B 6th
2001–02 Serie B 11th
2002–03 Serie B 2nd ↑
2003–04 Serie A I 8th
2004–05 Serie A 5th
2005–06 Serie A 12th
2006–07 Serie A 9th
2007–08 Serie A 6th
2008–09 Serie A 13th
2009–10 Serie A 4th
2010–11 Serie A 18th ↓
2011–12 Serie B II 6th ↑
2012–13 Serie A I 14th
2013–14 Serie A 12th
2014–15 Serie A 7th
2015–16 Serie A 15th
2016–17 Serie A 10th
2017–18 Serie A 10th
2018–19 Serie A 9th
Promoted Relegated



Serie A

Coppa Italia

Supercoppa Italiana

Serie B


European Cup

UEFA Cup Winners' Cup

UEFA Super Cup

  • Runners-up (1): 1990


Wembley International Tournament

  • Winners (3): 1990, 1991, 1992

Amsterdam Tournament

  • Winners (1): 1988

Joan Gamper Trophy

  • Winners (1): 2012

World Cup winners[edit]


  1. ^ "www.genoacfc.it". Archived from the original on 9 December 2001. Retrieved 20 June 2007.
  2. ^ Cup Winners' Cup 1988–89. The Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. (Retrieved 3 June 2011).
  3. ^ 1988/89: Hat-trick for Barcelona Archived 23 June 2010 at the Wayback Machine. 1 June 1989. UEFA.com. (Retrieved on 2011-06-03).
  4. ^ "Genoa cede Europa League spot to Sampdoria".
  5. ^ "2017-18 Serie A Season Review". Get football news Italy.
  6. ^ "Prima Squadra" (in Italian). U.C. Sampdoria. Retrieved 16 August 2018.
  7. ^ Smyth, Rob (18 October 2006). "What percentage of Frank Lampard's goals are deflected?". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 20 June 2007.
  8. ^ "Football Derby matches in Italy". FootballDerbies.com.
  9. ^ Raynor, Dominic (27 May 2011). "A date with destiny, funeral for a friend". ESPNFC. Retrieved 29 August 2014.

External links[edit]