The first game of the season

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Monday, April 19 2021, 9 PM. A gentle breeze surrounds the streets of Florence while a warm night descends on the famous Italian city, embracing it with its darkness. The atmosphere around Cerreti stadium is electrifying. A subtle and yet palpable tension pervades the air as thousands of supporters gather on the bleachers. After more than one year, it is again time for football. The IUE Squadra will never forget that warm night. On that night, seventeen lions fought for honour and glory, raising the colours of their team. On that night, seventeen heroes exceeded their limits, oblivious of any pain and suffering. After ages without even seeing the pitch, on that night, seventeen players almost became legends.

The first game of the season sought the IUE Calcio engaged against a tough opponent, the prideful Florentia 1989. To overcome the first obstacle towards victory, the misters prepared an almost indestructible battleship. On the goal, the experience of Bruno, guiding a defence of four brilliant players. On the left side, the mitico Presidente Tim plays close to Miguel and Lore Cicchi, with Ciro Ferrara completing the set on the right. The midfield is a mix of style and quality, with Capitan Gazza leading Sergi, Andrej and Tazio. On the top, Andres and Macron complement each other in another supreme mixture of speed and elegance. The premises for a legendary match are all there, and on the first 15 minutes, the great Squadra confirms its strength, forcing the opposing team within their box on several occasions. Unfortunately, after 20 minutes, a good counterattack by Florentia 1989 put the IUE at a disadvantage. An unexpected long-ball from the defence sends a Florentia attacker in front of the goalkeeper: a good shot by the Florentia player and an inculpable Bruno is defeated. The moment is critical. For the first time in ages, the IUE is down. At this point, Florentia finds the courage to oppose our lions, putting the defence under pressure on several occasions. A lack of coordination between the IUE central defenders creates a one vs one opportunity, and the Squadra is suddenly down 2-0. However, it is in the moment of danger and desperation that heroes arise.

Before the first half, misters Sergi and Arda modified the formation, strengthening the midfield and bravely leaving three defenders. Encouraged by the misters and reinvigorated by new energy from the Bench, the Squadra is now ready to fight for victory in the second half. Florentia is less aggressive and worried by incursions from the wings, as the lightning speed of Mads seems unstoppable. After ten minutes, however, another danger risks frustrating the efforts of IUE Calcio. Good penetrating pass from Florentia’s midfield and another 1-1 occasion inside the box. Luckily, this time the shot is not perfect and enable keeper Costenaro to make a good save. The game has not ended yet; the day is still to be called, our heroes are still ready to fight. Finally, after the other ten minutes, the magic happens. A good cross from the right side by Macron, and Andres the Great releases the beast inside him, scoring an incredible goal with a killing volleyball. 2-1, and our lions roar again. The pressure on Florentia’s defence seems unsupportable; the tension on the air is so dense that it could be cut with a knife. At 20 minutes before the end, however, another danger occurs as former legendary Presi Jan Karremans shows his dribbling ability in front of the IUE box. 1, 2, 3 adversaries are easily dribbled; the fourth forces Jan to the ground with a blatant foul.

To the surprise of everyone, however, the referee unexpectedly decides on a free kick favouring Florentia. The shot is good but slow, so the keeper manages to reach the bell and deviates it outside. The Squadra is now eager to claim the day and becomes more and more aggressive. Showing pre-PhD defence enlightenment, Andres guides the IUE peoples and supporters with his infinite energy. Another cross in Florentia’s box and the great beast nearly destroys the goal’s net with a tremendous shot. 2-2, some minutes more to play, and our Squadra is hungrier than ever. Precisely at the last minute, the topic moment arrives.

A long shot by the keeper surprises Florentia’s defence, finding Macron in the right place at the right time. Florentia’s goalkeeper attempts to come out, but Macron surprises it with a volley-lob. For a brief moment, the ten thousand supporters gathered at Cerreti kept their breath. The flow of time and space seemed to stop as the ball slowly descended towards Florentia’s goal. Were the people gathered there assisting to a miracle by our saviour Gabriele “Jesus” Macron? Was water going to be turned into wine again? Unfortunately, right before reaching the goal, the ball was deviated by a malevolent wind, finishing right over the right post. Again, the football gods showed their envy and fear towards the IUE Squadra, denying the victory it deserved. However, the great game remains, and the IUE achieved a great result in its first match. Now, the IUE Campioni are ready to climb to the top of the AICS Covid-format league, claiming their own place in the Olympus of football. FORZA CAMPIONI!