Serie A champions Juventus FC can complete an historic double in the Coppa Italia tonight.
History repeats itself
At stake is a league and cup double, something Juventus last achieved in 1994/95 when they beat Parma in the cup final. History, indeed, is repeating itself: that was Marcello Lippi's first term in the office he returned to last summer. "I don't think you should talk about a facsimile of my first year at Juve - there have been great differences between the two campaigns," he said. "But this is an important game which can transform a beautiful, if slightly fraught season, into an exceptional one."
Italy now expects. The first of two trophies arrived at the Delle Alpi last Sunday, when Juventus overtook long-time Serie A leaders Inter in the last round of games. "The joy was immense and we really celebrated," Lippi said. "The team needed to know what it was like to win something again. Now we have done so, it has made us even more confident and determined, and we will try to show this against Parma."
The 'Old Lady' takes a 2-1 lead to the Tardini stadium, courtesy of goals from second-string strikers Nicola Amoruso and Marcelo Zalayeta. Lippi will use the same tandem tonight. They will be up against Fabio Cannavaro, the Italian international who may or may not swap sides in the summer depending on which newspaper you read. Cannavaro was in the last Gialloblù team to lift the cup in 1999, and Parma also won it in 1992.
Parma seek happy ending
Having avoided relegation, Gedeone Carmignani's men can round off a turbulent year in style. Centre-forward Marco Di Vaio, another reported target of today's opponent, said: "I can't put into words what it would mean to win - to be able to give the cup to the fans and the club. It would be a fantastic end to the season." Juventus, seeking their third and Italian football's fifth double, will say 'si' to that.