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Thursday January 17 2013
Justice for Napoli

After winning their appeal, Susy Campanale hopes that Paolo Cannavaro, Gianluca Grava and Napoli can help change the sporting justice system forever.

Today’s Federal Court of Appeal verdict highlighted just how shaky the entire match-fixing and betting scandal has been. Justice was served in seeing Paolo Cannavaro and Gianluca Grava returned to Serie A after six-month bans, while Napoli can now resume their Scudetto challenge without that two-point penalty. The important thing now is that we can use this case – and that of Antonio Conte – to go forward and stop it happening again.

In case you haven’t been keeping track of the trial, Napoli and its players were convicted not of match-fixing, but of a failed attempt to consider a fix by the third-choice goalkeeper who never actually played that season. Matteo Gianello claimed he approached teammates Cannavaro and Grava to see if they’d be interested in fixing a game against Sampdoria in May 2010. He said he was turned down point-blank and never took the matter any further. The defenders insist Gianello never mentioned anything to them.

Gianello’s testimony was taken as “credible” despite the fact he repeatedly changed his version of this meeting he had with Cannavaro and Grava, adjusting the time, date and venue of this approach. It was still considered to be enough to ruin the careers of two players and potentially wreck a club’s title ambitions.

We’ve been through this before with Conte at Siena being the most glaring example of a long-running trial that is far from over. The basic problem with the Italian sporting justice system is that you are guilty until proven innocent, which in most cases is pretty impossible to do. This is one person’s word against another and if that version of events can be changed several times and still remain ‘credible,’ then it becomes even more arduous a task to show your innocence.

I hope that this verdict can finally open a new chapter for the Italian system, introducing reform or even just a method of reading the existing evidence so that guilt must be proved rather than the other way round. Otherwise we’ll see more players like Cannavaro and Grava have their careers torn to shreds.

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Have your say...
@ juvefanatico there was a difference in treatment because Napoli, Cannavaro & Grava were proved innocent and Conte was not (he was only cleared of one charge) and it had nothing to do with Juve as he was at Siena at the time. As for Juventus they were found guilty of doingbthings they shouldnt have hence the demotion to serie b, the two titles taken away and Moggi banned for life. Shame Inter didnt get the same treatment!
on the 19th January, 2013 at 11:54pm
@aidencav
You are embarrassing your self! I have told you earlier, do the research before you try to sound smart in a blog. Your obvious lack of knowledge in regards to Serie A is even more evident when you try to verbally attack someone who is telling you simply to do the necessary research instead of using made up statements such as the one about Moggi admitting to paying refs.
Stop being childish and face the facts!
on the 19th January, 2013 at 10:07pm
Dear aidencav,

EVERY SINGLE TEAMS IS CALCIO HAS BEEN GUILTY IN THIS SPORT. BIG TEAMS SINS = SMALL TEAMS SINS.
on the 19th January, 2013 at 4:01pm
S@juvefanatico. I always liked juve their playing style and quality on the pitch. I was a avid follower Why is.moggi suspended for.life? Explain it.to me. You clearly have your head up your **** if you cant face that juve was.guilty and napoli.not? Napoli still got.fined. no matches got fixed with napoli. A irrelevant player snitched for nothing. Go do some research.
on the 19th January, 2013 at 2:45pm
@Dario
Your ignorance is baffling! At what point have i said those two were not innocent? All i am arguing is that while all three man are innocent the treatment of Conte was completely opposite of Cannavaro and Grava.
I recommend you stop daydreaming about Juve being cheats as we have consistently proven our innocence while other clubs only talk of innocence.

@aidencav how deluded are you? Or do you seriously believe that a Juve official admitted to paying refs.

-Equal treatment for all!
on the 19th January, 2013 at 1:25pm
To Victor: Do you know anything about what's going on? Go somewhere else and write about LEGO
on the 19th January, 2013 at 8:29am
You guys should learn
In italy the north hate the south Juve lost their titles cause one of their highest.rankong.directors admitted to paying refs..
Conte got screwed cause siena not juve. If this was juve theyd have throwm out the case first.time around cause the snitch had different locations dates and times of his "meetings" with grava and cannavaro.
This makes.this year more.interesting. juve fans stop hating cause your lead got.cut back a few.points
on the 19th January, 2013 at 2:24am
@ Viktor

Insane?

No, you are a no-brain
on the 18th January, 2013 at 7:35pm
@juvefanatico because they were innocent!
on the 18th January, 2013 at 7:06pm
Napoli were rightly cleared in this judicial farce. I do wonder why the appeal procedure was expedited so swiftly for Napoli and Yet so drawn out for Conte.Despite the whole locker room stating that Conte did not and would be involved in such an enterprise the authorities chose to take the word of one admitted cheat.It is evident that Juve are always the target of the FIGC who punish Juve for "Unsporting Conduct"demote us and strip us of titles While others guilty of "Sporting Fraud" go unpunish
on the 18th January, 2013 at 4:18pm
@ Dario and Viktor

catch up on the most up to date information regarding Conte!

The man was cleared of any wrong doing after his ban expired.

Also how is it that Cannavaro and Grava were the only two witnesses by sides the accuser and still managed to change the verdict
while Conte had 24 people vouch for his innocence and prosecutors still believed the one man who accused Conte.
on the 18th January, 2013 at 3:50pm
all Juve fans..Conte was not innocent ..he knew there was a potential fix and did nothing about it. Grava and Cannavaro knew nothing about any fix and that's why they were deemed not guilty.
on the 18th January, 2013 at 3:30pm
@ Mikkel

"Now Juve wait for Conte compensation"

Are you insane?? Compensation for what? For being a cheater? Stupidest thing I've heard in a long time
on the 18th January, 2013 at 3:16pm
I am proud to be Italian for so many reasons, but this isn't one of them. This sporting justice system is just so retarded. How can these cases be even made public, when the evidence is so feeble? The people that make these accusations, and the prosecutors that believe them are the ones that should be brought to justice. Conte, Cannavaro et al must surely be able to sue for stress, public smearing, and missing work? This really is an embarrassment, an embarrassment that Italy doesn't need!
on the 18th January, 2013 at 1:30pm
Good Napoli was cleared. No Juventus are waiting for a Conte compensation.
on the 18th January, 2013 at 1:21pm
@Christoper Testa - as a Laziale I would love to see that article, I have been sure of Mauris innocence since day 1 (and so are Lazio) but as you rightly point out, this website, and especially the bloggers, are so anti-Lazio its untrue, so we will never see that.
on the 18th January, 2013 at 1:08pm
Very happy with this outcome as it shines on spotlight on a justice system that is itself criminal in nature. Napoli's points deduction would have falsified the championship and we at Juventus would never accept a "cardboard" Scudetto. Now, if this decision can bring down the system and clear the name of Antonio Conte, it will be a good start. Congratulations to Cannavaro & Grava.
on the 18th January, 2013 at 12:55pm
Personally i have nothing against Napoli.
However this verdict is by no means a win for Italian football or it's justice system. It only serves to cast further doubts over Italian's judicial system & It's transparency. How an innocent man like Conte had to serve out his sentence before his name was cleared is beyond me. Calciopoli i think i speak for all Juventini when i say "we are still waiting for Justice."

I am disgusted by the difference in treatment between Napoli & Juve.
This is Sad.
on the 18th January, 2013 at 12:53pm
Interesting... Napoli's appeal only took a couple of weeks to resolve & the results were overturned.

Juventus appeal is still ongoing & after 6 years (ideally when statue of limitations come into effect) that there's no evidence linking them to the punishable offence they served, yet to date nothing is done to rectify the situation.

I guess the law only works/applies to certain teams...

@funkyblueshoes
on the 18th January, 2013 at 11:36am
I'm glad Napoli were cleared because the whole case was a farce. It seems there are too many people in Italy wanting to make a name for themselves (and money) from high profile court cases. There should be serious repercussions to the accusers and their supporters to deter them from making up bull.
Calciopoli was a hysterical witch hunt designed to hurt a World Cup winning Juve, Conte was punished for being successful, and Napoli for not being from Milan.
Wake up Italy! Fora Juve!!
on the 18th January, 2013 at 11:17am
Wow, the fact Cannavaro and Grava were held under such insane charges, and the fact Gianello's testimony remained credible after several edited versions, is a microcosm for how awful the justice system is in Italy.

If the authorities don't like you, they get you.

I wonder what next for Napoli; failure to report Ezequiel Lavezzi's hidden status as a werewolf because once he was rested for a match when it was full moon?
on the 18th January, 2013 at 9:47am
Yeah, of course they do.
It will be another story if they were Juventus player.
by the way, anyway, busway....
RANOCCHIA send his regards!
on the 18th January, 2013 at 7:25am
If this one was Juve, it would never happened, if it would then it would take months or years.
on the 18th January, 2013 at 2:32am
Anonymous: you really are an idiot, Juve were not guilty of anything. The allegations were against Siena and Conte's time as coach there, yet Juve are still penalised as a result. The issue us Juve fans have is the FIGC will try anything to pin something on us. And it's morons like you with your anti-juve glasses on that fuel our anger with your ignorant opinions and comments on blogs like this. Too bad there's no stupid filter on these websites...
on the 18th January, 2013 at 1:34am
Reading about how much "evidence" is being used in these cases you wonder how many more of the sides across the top 2 divisions are actually innocent? Calciopoli has resulted in hysteria.
on the 18th January, 2013 at 12:24am
Justice for all italian football
on the 18th January, 2013 at 12:15am
I agree wholeheartedly.

I also expect to see Football Italia publish something along the lines of 'justice for Stefano Mauri'.

The man who was made the poster boy of the entire scandal deserves an absolution, particularly given a court has just ruled Carlo Gervasoni, his only accuser, an unreliable witness.

I know you don't like Lazio though so naturally, captain Mauri would make a great scapegoat.
on the 17th January, 2013 at 11:28pm
I'm glad Juve aren't the only ones who cheat...This fairy tale sounds a lot like Conte's Nightmare of 4 months..How can a justice system accept a persons's testimony as credible if their story keeps changing is beyond me..
on the 17th January, 2013 at 10:55pm
you guys are morons. juventus was never implicated - conte was while coaching siena. idiots!
on the 17th January, 2013 at 10:48pm
I'm happy for Napoli and the players, as they never deserved this. This scandal has again been horribly handled by the FIGC, just a few years after Calciopoli demoted a club and took away 2 titles based on the bitterness of rival clubs. Evidence wasn't needed then, and clearly wasn't needed to punish Conte, Grava and Cannavaro, amongst others.

Guilty until proven innocent is a totally unfair way to run any justice system. It's led to the wrong people being punished in both scandals.
on the 17th January, 2013 at 10:37pm

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