Serie A

Serie A is the top professional soccer league in Italy and one of the most popular leagues in the world. The league is known for its tactical soccer and for being a defensively sound league. Serie A teams routinely perform well in European club competitions with numerous Champions League and UEFA Cup/Europa League titles. 

The winner of Serie A is awarded the Scudetto and the Coppa Campioni d’Italia. The Scudetto is a tri-colored shield in the Italian flag colors of red, white, and green, worn by the winning team in the next season as a badge of honor. The Coppa is the actual trophy, created in 1960, given to the winning team to display for a year. The trophy returns to the league offices, and the winner gets a scale model for their trophy case.

Serie A sits atop the Italian soccer pyramid and consists of 20 teams. The league attracts top players and top managers, and the clubs play in some of the most famous soccer cathedrals in the world. 

The world-famous and most famous Italian teams are Juventus, Internazionale, AC Milan, Roma, Napoli, and Lazio. 

Serie A History

As it is known today, the league Serie A began in 1929-30. Before that, Italian clubs played regionalized games and leagues with multiple regional championships around the country. The Direttorio Divisioni Superiori ran the league from 1929 to 1943, replaced by Lega Calcio until 2010, and then Lega Serie A was created as the league’s governing body in 2010. 

The first season of Serie A action in 1929-30 was the first to feature a single-tier league with round-robin action. The first champions were Ambrosiana-Inter, now known as the popular Internazionale. Juventus won the next five titles before Bologna won a pair. Those three teams combined to win the first 12 official Serie A titles before Roma won in 1941-42, during World War II. 

Torino won their first title a year later and also became the first team to win a Scudetto/Coppa Italia double before the league took two years off for the war. They did host a tournament in 1944, won by Spezia, and they were later given an honorary title. 

Following the war, Torino picked up where they left off, finishing the decade with four straight titles in what is known as the Grande Torino Era. However, disaster struck Il Toro in May 1949 when their plane crashed into a church in Turin after a friendly in Portugal. The accident was attributed to dense fog, and it killed the entire team and coaches along with multiple club officials, traveling journalists, and the flight crew. 

There were still four games left in the season, and Torino led Internazionale by four points but had no players left to finish the schedule. The league decided to award them the title, their fifth straight, and they called up a youth team to finish the season. 

Juventus won the following season before AC Milan grabbed their first Serie A title in 1950-51. Juventus and the two Milan teams won every title between 1949-50 and 1962-63 except for a Fiorentina win in 1955-56. This period of time also included a fluctuation of teams from 21 in 1947-48 down to 18 and eventually to 16 in 1967, 

AC Milan won the Champions League in 1963, the first Italian champions. After Bologna won the Scudetto in 1963-64, Internazionale won two in a row, and the 1964-65 team was the first to win the Champions League/Serie A double. Juventus and AC Milan added titles in the late 60s, with the latter taking a UEFA Cup Winners Cup to double in 1968 and winning the Champions League the next season.

Cagliari won their first title in 1970-71, and Lazio won their first in 1973-74. Juventus won three titles in the early 1970s, and their Turin neighbors completed a comeback in 1975-76. After the air disaster, Torino was relegated to Serie B and slowly rebuilt the team, returning to Serie A. However, they didn’t win a title until 1975-76, when they chased down Juventus and won the title on the final day of the season. 

Juventus went back on top the following season and added a UEFA Cup title as well. They added two more titles as both Milan clubs also won a Scudetto before Roma returned to the top in 1982-83. Hellas Verona took their first title in 1984-85, and Napoli, led by Diego Maradona, went on top for the first time two years later. 

Juventus took the Champions League title in 1985, and AC Milan went back-to-back in the Champions League in 1989 and 1990. Napoli grabbed a second title before Maradona left, and Sampdoria won the first title in 1990-91. The rest of the decade belonged to AC Milan and Juventus. Milan won five titles in the decade-plus the 1994 Champions League while Juventus won three Scudettos. 

The city of Rome took over from there as Lazio won it all in 1999-2000, and Roma took the Scudetto the next season. Juventus won three of four, but their 2004-05 title was later stripped, and they and runners-up AC Milan were both implicated in the Calciopoli scandal. 

The infamous match-fixing scandal was uncovered in May 2006 and involved multiple teams, players, managers, and the referee organization. The title was declared invalid and unassigned, and prison sentences were eventually handed out. AC Milan, Fiorentina, Lazio, and Reggina have deducted points, while Juventus was relegated to Serie B and all were kicked out of European competitions. 

Juventus won Serie B and returned to Serie A immediately, but over 30 players left Serie A following the 2006 World Cup so they wouldn’t be tainted by the scandal. Among those who left the league, though both eventually returned. 

Internazionale capitalized on the downfall of Juventus and AC Milan as they took the next five titles, with Roma finishing second on four of those occasions. Both Milan clubs won Champions League titles before the end of the decade. AC Milan won the title in 2010-11 before Juventus reclaimed their spot atop Italian soccer. 

With legends like Gianluigi Buffon, Giorgio Chiellini, Leonardo Bonucci, and Andrea Pirlo, the Old Lady won six straight titles to end the 2010s. They also claimed four consecutive Coppa Italia doubles from 2015-18 in that span. Internazionale ended the run in 2020-21 as they edged out AC Milan and the teams battled for a title again in 2021-22. 

Serie A Records 

The Serie A record book has a lot of Juventus, Internazionale, and AC Milan. Juventus has 36 titles, including nine straight from 2011-12 to 2019-20. Internazionale played in Serie A for each of the first 90 seasons, setting a record. The 2013-14 Juventus team set the record for most points in a 20-team league with 102, while AC Milan had 82 points in an 18-team league in 2003-04. 

The 2006-07 Internazionale team won a record 17 straight games while Juventus won 33 straight at home from 2015-17. The 2013-14 Juventus team won a record 33 games with a record 19 wins at home. AC Milan played 58 games without losing from May 26, 1991, to March 21, 1993. 

The most prolific scoring team in Serie A history was the 1947-48 Torino team with 125 goals. 

No one has played in more Serie A games than Parma and Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon with 657 between 1995 and 2001. He also holds the Serie A record for individual championships with 10 and the record for most clean sheets with 299.

Silvio Piola scored a Serie A record 274 goals from 1929 to 1954 with Pro Vercelli, Lazio, Torino, Juventus, and Novara. Francesco Totti holds the record for most goals, with one club as Il Capitano scored 250 times for Roma between 1992 and 2017. Gunner Nordahl, Giuseppe Meazza, Jose Altafini, Antonio Di Natale, and Roberto Baggio all scored more than 200 Serie A goals in their careers. 

Totti holds the record for most penalty kick goals with 71, three more than Baggio. Sinisa Mihajlovic scored 28 goals from free-kicks, two more than Pirlo. 

How do the Serie A odds work?

Serie A soccer odds work, as do most soccer odds, in a three-way bet or a two-way bet. In the former, a draw is considered, while in a two-way bet, there is no draw.  All moneyline bets end after regular time plus injury time. 

If you bet AC Milan in a two-way bet at home against Juventus, they might be -110 with Juve at +150. But in a three-way bet that changes to Milan +130, Juve +210, and draw is +225.

Regular Serie A best bets

Betting on Serie A odds has multiple options like total goals in a game, total goals by a team, individual player goals, and straight money line bets. There are multiple best bets for Ligue 1 soccer odds. 

Betting the spread or goal line moves in half goal increments, usually from -3.5 to +3.5. So betting Roma -1.5 against Lazio, you need Roma to win by two goals or more to win the bet.

You don’t care who scores on total goals, and you just need the total to go over that number. A Napoli/Atalanta game at over 3.5 covers in a 2-2 game. Team totals deal with just that team, so over 1.5 for Napoli would cover in the same game, but over 2.5 for Atalanta would lose. 

Player odds can be steep but profitable if a player is on a good run. You can get individuals to score the first goal of the game, score the last goal of the game, or score anytime. You can also get them to score on a penalty kick, so learn who the specialty players are.

Serie A Futures bets

Serie A futures markets are a great way to invest throughout the season. Bettors can wager on teams to win the Scudetto, qualify for Champions League, or even on which teams will get relegated. Odds will change during the season as teams win or lose. 

Bettors can also bet on individual season awards in futures bets. The most popular of these is which player will lead the league in goals scored. Again, this can change during the season, so keep an eye on who is hot and what the schedules look like to get a player at the best odds. 

Serie A Betting tips

Serie A is a very popular league for soccer betting as it is most readily available worldwide. Learning the players, managerial styles, and travel is key. Weather in southern Italy can be drastically different from that in northern Italy, so pay attention to where the game is being played. 

Follow the teams on social media to keep up with the lineups, injuries, suspensions, and other teams news. News sites in English for Serie A are widely available. 

How to bet on Serie A?

Serie A betting is available at most books. Shop around to find the best odds, profit boosts, and deals.

Serie A Odds Frequently Asked Questions

A typical Serie A season starts in August and runs into late May. As with most European leagues, Serie A takes a winter break for the holidays. The league has weekend and midweek games, especially following international breaks. The schedule can change in years with a World Cup or European Championship.

The league has 20 teams, and they play a full round-robin with 19 home games and 19 road games. Each team plays the other twice. A win is worth three points, and a draw is worth one.

The top four teams in the standings each year qualify for the Champions League since Italy is among the UEFA leaders in coefficient. The next three teams in the standings make it to the other European competitions. The bottom three teams get relegated to Serie B

Italy has more city derbies in their top league than most every other major European league. Rome, Milan, Turin, and Genoa regularly have two teams in the league, and Verona has as well. There are also regional rivalries with Atalanta just outside Milan and Empoli near Florence. 

Derby della Madonnia between Internazionale and AC Milan dates back to 1909, and there’s no love lost between the two. Inter was long looked at as the team of the bourgeoisie while AC Milan are the blue-collar club and supporters. Both call San Siro home, and games can get feisty. 

Likewise, the Derby della Capitale is a heated affair between Lazio and Roma. They share Stadio Olimpico for now. First played in 1929, this intra-city, intra-stadium affair is also a cultural rivalry, and Lazio ultras have been known to incite violence with anti-Semitic chants and banners. 

The Derby della Mole between Juventus and Torino dates back to 1907. The teams shared a stadium until Juventus built a new one and moved out in 2011. This derby is the oldest ongoing meeting between two Italian clubs in the same city, and like the Milan, affair features the luxury of Juventus with the working class of Torino.

The soccer stadiums in Italy are among the most beautiful and famous soccer cathedrals in the world. Internazionale and AC Milan share San Siro, which holds over 75,000 fans. Lazio and Roma currently share Stadio Olimpico in the capital, welcoming more than 70,000 fans. Naples stadium holds 55,000 and was renamed Stadio Diego Armando Maradona in 2020 following the death of their former star. 

Juventus moved into Allianz Stadium in 2011 leaving Stadio Olimpico Grande Torino for Torino alone. Genoa and Sampdoria share Stadio Luigi Ferraris and Fiorentina’s Stadio Artemio Franchi holds more than 40,000 fans.

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