You’ll notice today that Woodbridge Town will be wearing red socks for today’s match in a change from our usual black.
The symbolic gesture is a further acknowledgement of our friendship with Italian Serie B side Ascoli Calcio 1898 FC.
It has become a tradition that ‘I Picchi’ wear red socks to celebrate and commemorate the life of former club president Costantino Rozzi on the game nearest the anniversary of his death each December.
However last season Ascoli found themselves close to relegation so started to wear the red socks for luck. After a change of fortune, they continued to wear these for the rest of the season and managed to secure their place in the second division.
The ‘Presidentissimo’ was known for wearing lucky red socks both home and away. His influence on the club’s history and respect he had earned led the team to commemorate the 10 year anniversary of his passing in 2004 by wearing red socks. This act of remembrance has been repeated every year since.
Costantino Rozzi could be likened to The Cobbold Brothers at Ipswich Town and the high regard in which they are held at Portman Road and in the area.
Rozzi was identified as an emerging figure of the local economy, with solid communication skills and exuberance and was convinced to take the position of President in 1968. It was 3 years later that the club was given it’s current name; Ascoli Calcio 1898. He was an entrepreneur in the field of construction but also known for his work in the agriculture sector which included creating a winery but was perhaps better known for his television appearances.
The 70’s really were the glory days for Ascoli, under the ownership of Costantino Rozzi, winning Serie B in 1978 and finishing 4th in Serie A in the 1979-80 season and 6th just 2 seasons later. In fact, Ascoli have competed in a total of 16 season in Serie A since 1974. During his tenure he also signed Liam Brady and Oliver Bierhoff, not bad for a small city side with a population of just 50,000.
A great football fan Rozzi was maybe ahead of his time when he predicted the birth of a European Super League as far back as 1979.
It was on the 18th of December 1994, shortly after a 3-0 victory over Pescara that Costantino Rozzi died. It’s reported that around 20,000 people came to the city in the Marche region to attend his funeral which is a real testament to how he was admired.
Ascoli host Cremonese on the 18th, next Saturday, at The Del Duca and Rozzi will be looking down, no doubt with his lucky red socks and red scarf.