07.03.2019 18:30 - in: UCL S

      Four Bianconeri sporting comebacks

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      Stefano Baldini, Federica Pellegrini, Josefa Idem, Deborah Compagnoni: are four Juventini who have written their comeback story in sport.

      Voices of a comeback have been circulating around. It’s a word well known in Juve's home, not only by the players who wore the Bianconera shirt, but also by other sporting athletes.

      Italian sports history has often been synonymous with big impressions, often built on recoveries and comebacks that seemed impossible on paper. Among these, many bear the signature of J |Sport, that is to say illustrious representatives of the bianconeri family, who wanted to celebrate their goals by leaving a tangible symbol of their work at the Juventus Museum.

      We have chosen four, which perfectly embody the concept of #GETREADY TO COMEBACK and show, once again, how the "Fino Alla Fine" is not just a slogan, but a philosophy of life shared by the people of Juventus in 360 degrees.

      The section of J|Sport dedicated to Stefano Baldini at the Juventus Museum

      Is there a better way to write your name into the history books by winning an Olympic gold in the marathon, just where the marathon had its own glorious origin? Stefano Baldini, Olympic gold medallist in the 2004 Athens marathon, is not only colossal for the milestone he reached in the most anticipated event of the Olympics, but also for the manner in which it was manifested.

      Kenyan Paul Tergat was considered the favorite of all at the Marathon’ starting line, but in the lead for most of the race was the Brazilian Vanderlei de Lima, with Stefano Baldini chasing behind along with the USA’s Meb Keflezighi. Just 3km from the finish line, the Azzurri athlete and Bianconero fan, made an incredible comeback, by detaching himself from the US athlete and surpassing the Brazilian.


      During her shining career, Federica Pellegrini has often been accustomed to the great triumphs and successes of the world. But there is one in particular that perfectly embodies the concept of a "comeback", apparently an unlikely comeback, which then turned into a historical conquest.

      It was at the 2017 World Championships in Budapest, 200 freestyle, the race that by definition saw the Venetian swimmer baptised as "Diva del nuoto". At the time, the Juventus fan was 29 years old and was facing a group of girls of absolute talent as her competition. The start was indeed an uphill battle. The Azzurra was fifth in first section of the match and fourth from midpoint of the race. Then, when the game seemed set and match, Pellegrini created 50 meters of science fiction, overcoming the four rivals and touching in first. It was a crazy comeback, which was worth the record of seven consecutive medals in eight world championships.

      Josefa Idem visits the Juventus Museum

      This was "apparently" another impossible undertaking – to win an Olympic gold in a comeback at the age of 36. However, that wasn’t the case for the J | Sport athlete Josefa Idem, who, at the 2000 Sydney Olympics in the K1 500m canoe, made everyone excited with a victory of class, technique and character, torn with an advantage of 798 thousandths of a second at the finish line. 

      Idem, who was the female athlete with the most Olympic Games ever held, was left to the Hungarian Coban and the Yugoslav Janic for most of the route, in a race of unfavourable environmental conditions due to a strong wind. At the 200-meter mark, however, the comeback was created by the bianconera fanatic canoeist, who overturned the trend of the race and lead strenuously, until the end, closing in front of the favourite, the Canadian Brunet, to win the Olympic gold at 36 years old.


      Finally, it’s impossible not to mention one of the greatest athletes in Italian sports history: Deborah Compagnoni. The bianconera skier, also present in the J | Sport section of the Juventus Museum, has a collection of comebacks, not only on the ski slopes, but also on a personal level. Despite a career plagued with injuries, Deborah was the most victorious Italian skier of all-time and the first, among other things, to have won a gold medal in three different editions of the Winter Olympic Games in the history of alpine skiing.

      One of her best comeback wins was the gold in the giant slalom in Sierra Nevada in 1996. With a second- and 14-centimetres delay from the provisional leader, Sonja Nef, her dreams of finishing on the highest step on the podium seemed to have vanished. In the second run, however, the skier from Bormio, exalted with an almost perfect descent and, from being in fourth in the first heat, she ended the race as the leader of the standings. What a comeback!

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