A kick where it hurts

Calcio Storico disqualifications

Kirsten Hills
January 16, 2014

Florence’s disciplinary committee for its famed sport of calcio storico has ruled that 20 players are to be disqualified from next year’s game. The decision comes after a particularly brutal final between the Blues and Whites last June.


Although the game is famed for its violence (head-butting, punching and kicking are all permitted), last year’s final saw players from both teams break many of the rules.


Calcio storico is a mix of rugby, wrestling and, to some extent, boxing. It is said to be the game from which modern football evolved. Four teams representing districts of Florence fight for the victory of their neighbourhood.



In 2006, the game got so out of hand that it was cancelled for a year and new rules were introduced. No kicks are allowed to the head, nor are unexpected punches. Fights must only be one-on-one. Many of these rules were broken during last year’s final, leading to the disqualifications.


Captain of the Whites team, Marino Vieri, said he was saddened by the decision and has called for the Blues to be stripped of their victory.

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