Igor Protti Profile
Igor Protti - Career
Igor Protti became a cult player in the 1990s when he rose from nowhere to suddenly top the Serie A goal-scoring table before dropping out of the charts even quicker than he'd risen!
Having worked his way up the leagues from Serie C1 and Serie B with the likes of Rimini, Livorno and Messina, Protti finally found himself in Serie A in 1994 having helped Bari achieve promotion. Whilst his first season in Italy's top-flight may have been somewhat inauspicious, his second, 1995-96, was nothing short of phenomenal, with his rugged features and straggly hair, he became a well known sight as he smashed in goals galore, starting the season as he meant to go on with a goal against Napoli after just three minutes, and continuing right through the season to a late goal against Juventus on the final day. His 24 goals in just 33 matches meant he was the Serie A top-scorer along with Lazio's Giuseppe Signori. Incredibly, despite Protti's goalscoring heroics Bari suffered relegation back down to Serie B.
Protti's incredible season resulted in a big money move to Lazio, but his goal-scoring stats immediately dropped down to his pre-1995 levels and would stay that way until a remarkable career swansong with Livorno. Joining the west-coast club as they languished in the lower reaches of Serie C1, he would immiediately start to find the back of the net again and topped the league's goalscoring charts in both 2000-01 and 2001-02, the latter season seeing the club promoted to Serie B as champions. Protti then had two great seasons in Serie B; in their first season back in the second-tier he was the league's highest goalscorer and became the first player to have top-scored in Italy's three highest football leagues, And Protti would elevate himself to legendary status with Livorno in the following season, captaining the side and forming a lethal strike partnership with Cristiano Lucarelli as the pair scored 54 goals to fire Livorno back into Serie A. Protti, now aged 37, would score a respectable six goals in 27 appearances for the club as they finished in a fantastic ninth place in their first Serie A season for over 50 years. Protti would then retire at the end of the season. It was a mark of the man that Livorno wanted to retire his number 10 shirt but during the award ceremony, Protti asked them not to retire as he wanted "to give anybody back the dream to dress it one day".
Igor Protti - Playing Style
Other articles featuring Igor Protti