The Greatest Italian Midfielders of all-time



No.1 Giacomo Bulgarelli

Apart from two matches at the very end of his career with NASL side Hartford Bicentennials, Bulgarelli spent his sixteen years in Italy with Bologna, becoming a legend at the club as he helped them win their first Scudetto since the club’s glory years of the 1930s and early 1940s. Described by Fabio Capello as Italy's greatest ever midfielder, Bulgarelli was the complete footballer for the centre of the pitch, Defensively he was excellent, tenacious, hard-working and strong in the tackle, whilst offensively he also had great attributes - great vision, passing ability and intelligence on and off the ball.



No.1 Romano Fogli

Bologna legend who as a youngster had been rejected by several clubs as they thought he was tool frail and wouldn’t stand up to the rigours of the adult game. Whilst his physique remained rather slim throughout his career he had a Overly elegant style about him and a surprisingly good engine that would see him covering vast areas of the pitch and earning him the nickname of the mosquito. He proved to be the perfect midfield partner at Bologna for Giacomo Bulgarelli as the two helped the side win their first Scudetto for more than 20 years.



No.1 Giovanni Lodetti

Tremendously hard-working little midfielder who would act as the defensive sidekick to the creative talent of Gianni Rivera at Milan throughout the 1960s. Whilst Rivera would often get the plaudits from the press, Lodetti’s work rate, stamina and all round play would get the respect of his teammates, fans and coaches, and he was often the first name on the team sheet for likes of Nereo Rocco who managed him.



No.1 Giovanni Ferrari

One of only three Italian players to have won two World Cups, Giovanni Ferrari was the playmaker of the Azzurri’s 1934 and 1938 triumphs.



No.1 Fulvio Bernardini



No.1 Valentino Mazzola



No.1 Attilio Ferraris



No.1 Giuseppe Meazza



No.1 Luis Monti



No.1 Giancarlo De Sisti



No.1 Antonio Juliano



No.1 Fabio Capello



No.1 Franco Causio

Nicknamed the Baron due to his stylish looks and play, Franco Causio cut an iconic figure on the right wing in the 1970s and 1980s, his shock of black hair and his moustache making him one of the most identifiable players of that Serie A era. A traditional winger possessing great natural dribbling skills and crossing ability, Causio was best known for his eleven years with Juventus from 1970 to 1981, a long spell that would see his performances help the club to six Serie A titles, a Coppa Italia and a UEFA Cup.



No.1 Renato Zaccarelli



No.1 Claudio Sala

A Torino legend and one of Italy’s best wingers in the 1970s, Claudio Sala played nearly 400 games for the Granata in an eleven year period. Know for his pace, power, passing and crossing, Sala was a real handful for Serie A fullbacks throughout his career, and his two-footedness meant he could be dangerous on either flank.



No.1 Giuseppe Dossena

A regista, Dossena made his name in the early 1980s with Torino, his performances with the Granata earning him a call up to the national team and earning him a place on the plane as part of the successful 1982 World Cup squad.

After six years in Turin, he moved to Udinese, turning 30 whilst he was there and many expecting his career to wind down. However, a move to Sampdoria in the summer of 1988 would provide an unexpected late kickstart to Dossena’s career and result in a fantastic swan song that would see him winning a Scudetto with Samp in 1991. Dossena would form a great midfield partnership with the great Brazilian Cerezo and, incredibly, would be the only player to appear in every Serie A match, despite being one of the oldest squad members.



No.1 Gianpiero Marini



No.1 Bruno Conti



No.1 Carlo Ancelotti

An elegant, intelligent midfielder who had a great career but one which could have been even better had it not been for injuries before or during key moments of his career. Ancelotti started his career with Parma before moving to Roma. Often played on the wing, he would become a deep-lying playmaker when he moved to Milan and would have a strong influence on his successor in the role, Albertini. Anyone who was lucky enough to see Ancelotti play in his prime, with his intelligence on and off the ball, along with his tactical excellence, will not have been surprised to see him make the successful step up to management.



No.1 Salvatore Bagni



No.1 Fernando De Napoli



No.1 Antonio Di Gennaro



No.1 Agostino Di Bartolomei



No.1 Giuseppe Giannini



No.1 Roberto Donadoni



No.1 Nicola Berti



No.1 Demetrio Albertini



No.1 Dino Baggio



No.1 Antonio Conte



No.1 Alberico Evani



No.1 Angelo Di Livio



No.1 Roberto Di Matteo



No.1 Diego Fuser



No.1 Luigi Di Biagio



No.1 Massimo Ambrosini



No.1 Stefano Fiore



No.1 Gennaro Gattuso



No.1 Damiano Tommasi



No.1 Mauro Camoranesi



No.1 Simone Perrotta



No.1 Andrea Pirlo



No.1 Daniele De Rossi



No.1 Claudio Marchisio



No.1 Thiago Motta



No.1 Marco Verratti



No.1 Giancarlo Antognoni



No.1 Roberto Baggio



No.1 Gianni Rivera



No.1 Romeo Benetti



No.1 Massimo Crippa



No.1 Sandro Mazzola

The son of legendary 1940s Torino midfielder Valentino Mazzola, Sandro would go on to become a superstar himself at another Serie A club, Inter, in the 1960s and 1970s. He would inherit his father’s skill and creativity, attributes that would see him on occasion play in a similar playmaker role to his father. He also developed the same goalscoring ability, and his knack of timing his runs would lead to a reputation of scoring important goals, none more so than in the 1964 European Cup final where he scored twice and in the 1964 and 1965 Intercontinental Cup where he would score in both finals.



No.1 Gianluca Zambrotta



No.1 Marco Tardelli