Over the years, Inter’s Curva Nord have pressurised club officials into doing them favours related to ticket sales, stadium entrances and away trips. It is the second time in a short period that the ultras make a negative appearance in Italian newspapers.
One of Inter’s ultra bosses, Vittorio Boiocchi, was killed on Saturday night, before the Nerazzurri’s match against Sampdoria. To honour their fallen leader, the Curva Nord decided to be quiet and have no banners and flags visible. Just before the second half started, they went even further and abandoned the stand. The fans, including women and children, that did not leave were forcibly removed from their places by the ultras.
If we were to believe the Corriere della Sera, this is not a new phenomenon for Inter’s Curva Nord. For example, the killed Boiocchi wanted to be notified when new signings would arrive at the airport, so that the Curva could take the first pictures with them and give the necessary welcome. That was not the case when Ashley Young arrived in January 2020. When Boiocchi called the Inter manager who he thought should have informed him of Young’s arrival, he shouted:
“Now let’s change tactics, now we take things by force and then we’ll see what happens.”
But that wasn’t even everything. Organization of trips, entrances into the stadium and the sale of tickets were also influenced by the Curva. When there were not enough tickets for a trip to Lecce, someone talked about rioting:
“So, I’m going there with 200 people without a ticket.”
Four Inter executives were investigated because the thought was that they’d collaborated to favour the ultra bosses. They’d provide them discounted tickets or the ultras even had to pay nothing at all. The bosses would also have the merchandising trade. One of the executives argued that the ultra’s pressurised them psychologically into collaborating with their criminal status, especially Boiocchi. There was also the concern of the Curva changing its behaviour such as resorting to things like singing offensive chants and throwing smoke bombs if their requests weren’t met.
What can be said is that Saturday wasn’t the first time the Curva Nord came in publicity negatively, and it seems like it won’t be the last time.
Jurre van Wanrooij | GIFN