Un Presidente! Grazie, Alex!

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We publish below the final Presidential Adress of outgoing IUE Calcio President Alexander Trechsel, delivered at the annual IUE Calcio Presidential BBQ in Le Cure, Florence, on Saturday, 9. June 2018. While one chapter of the history of the IUE Calcio draws to a close, Presi Alex Trechsel will always be in the hearts of all those who had the honour to wear the colours of IUE Calcio under his presidency. C’è solo un Presidente! Grazie, Alex! Forza IUE!

Presidential Address held by Presi at the Presidential BBQ, June 9, 2018

Presi delivering his final presidential speech.

Presi delivering his final presidential speech.

Fenomeni assoluti,

so yesterday evening I sat here, all on my own, in this very garden that witnessed so many of our Presidential BBQs. Its trees and walls have seen so many smiling faces, so many tears of joy, they have heard so many stories, recalling glorious seasons, so many songs we danced to, and so many times our Hymn we sang to.

This garden has witnessed awards for new players who played with us for the first time, and this garden has seen, years later, the same players salute the squadra. Some of them have, during their time with our squadra, become part of starting elevens, indispensable protagonisti on and off the pitch, some have become Misters, Dirigenti, Senatori and some of them have even become legends.

These trees, these walls, they have seen transitions. And they have seen continuity, despite transitions. Continuity of our team, our squadra fantastica, continuity of our spirit, of our dedication to IUE Calcio, of our hard work, of our glories and defeats, and of our values that we cherish, that we live in our daily lives, our values that have shaped the squadra and that squadra has shaped among and within us.

We all grew with the squadra, and we made squadra grow together. IUE Calcio has become a reference in our lives, a team that we know is there, even if we are not.

When I came to Florence, a long time ago, I had the privilege of being welcomed by the squadra fantastica. My footballistic skills were as dismal as ever but that did not matter. I could train with squadra, I could play some games with squadra and I even once could wear the fascia di capitano throughout an entire game, a friendly match against the team of Palazzo Vecchio. And I could score a goal in an official league game. It was the decisive 5:0, some seven years ago, against Castellina. All of these moments were for me simply incommensurably great. They meant bliss.

But the biggest honor was for me to be the Presidente – the Presi – of the squadra. For a decade or so I tried to give something back to this team that was there to help me keep in reasonable shape, that taught me so many aspects of football, that was there for me in the good times and that was there for me in darker times.

As Presidente I took part in AICS meetings and ceremonies, I could host the annual Presidential BBQ, I could work so closely together with so many fantastic misters, I could write the lyrics of our hymn and I could sing it after every game we played, surrounded by our campioni in Finnegan’s.

There were moments that were less joyful, of course, and this had to be expected. There were some people – a handful out of hundreds – trying to spread distrust and hatred. That were jealous of the team, of the misters, of the way things went.

In these rare situations, I tried to help sort out things in my role of Presidente. The same goes for the institution, in which not every decision maker was a friend of IUE Calcio. But over the time these issues got resolved and belong now to the past.

So when I sat here in this garden, yesterday night, I first and foremost recalled the happy moments, just like this one we have right now. And it gave me the courage to say what I have to say now.

Dear fenomeni, it was an unbelievable honor and privilege to serve you as Presi. But the time has come for me to step down from the Presidency, to leave the job to a member of our squadra who can dedicate the time I would like to dedicate to the team, but that I cannot because of the family’s move back home, to Switzerland.

I have to step down from being the Presi because a Presi has to be around. He has to live the squadra like we always did – by spending time together, by training, playing, cheering and celebrating together.

This is a difficult moment for me, as I knew it had to come, but now that it actually has come, I am a bit emotionally overwhelmed. It is the end of a personal era.

But what eases my sorrow of having to leave the squadra is the knowledge that it will be in the best hands possible. And before passing on the floor to our incoming Presidente, let me simply recall that being Presi is not possible without you all. Without everyone who has ever touched a ball in training, during a game, or stood in the curva. Every single person who has done so has become a member of the squadra – in whatever role or combinations thereof.

I have heard it so many times, the “un Presidente – c’è solo un Presidente”. It filled my heart with pride and gratefulness, every time. But being Presi without you is not possible. And therefore it is not true that there is only “un Presidente”.

You are all Presis. Every single one of you is Presi. Remember that this team belongs to all of us, to all those who have given some of their time, their sweat and their love to the squadra fantastica.

You are all Presis. As long as you believe in our values of solidarity and diversity, of mutual help, support and understanding, of friendship beyond status, language or nationality, as long as you believe in this, you will be Presi. Everyone of you is Presi.

So let these trees and walls witness yet another transition. Let them witness a transition that is nothing more than a mere variation of continuity. I am deeply grateful for everything I received from you and all the members of the squadra across the years. I will always wear the colors of the squadra in my heart.

And I now pass on the Presidency of IUE Calcio to a member of this team that merits this position as much as we all merit the position. But one of us has to do the job.

Fenomeni assoluti, I thank you for everything and I want you to give a warm welcome to our former Mister, our Legend and our future Presi, Jan – Pep – Karremans.