Stefano Tacconi is an Italian former association footballer, who played as a goalkeeper. He is the only goalkeeper to have won all international club competitions, a feat he managed during his time with Juventus. At international level, he was largely used as a back-up goalkeeper behind Walter Zenga, which earned him the nickname “the best back-up keeper in the world”. He was a member of the Italy squads that took part at the 1988 Summer Olympics, UEFA Euro 1988, and the 1990 FIFA World Cup. He is widely regarded by pundits as one of the best goalkeepers of his generation, and as one of Italy’s best ever goalkeepers.
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Tacconi joined Juventus in 1983, ahead of Luciano Bodini, as a replacement for his legendary predecessor Dino Zoff, who had retired at the end of the previous season. With Giovanni Trapattoni’s Juventus club, Tacconi achieved great domestic and international success, as he won two scudetti in 1984 and 1986, the European Cup Winners’ Cup in 1984, the 1984 European Super Cup, the European Champion Clubs’ Cup in 1985 and the 1985 Intercontinental Cup the same year against Argentinos Juniors on penalties. In 1990 Tacconi and Juventus went on to win a UEFA Cup and a Coppa Italia double; the following season, he was named the team’s captain, although Juventus lost out on the 1990 Supercoppa Italiana to Serie A winners Napoli. During this period, Juventus were one of the best teams in the world, and Tacconi was also regarded as one of the top goalkeepers in the world. After a ten-year working relationship with Juventus (during the 1985–86 season he was kept on the bench), Tacconi transferred to Genoa C.F.C. in 1992. Unfortunately, Genoa was relegated to Serie B at the end of season. He retired from professional football in 1994.
Match Worn & Signed Gloves
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Despite his performances and success with Juventus, Tacconi was not able to find much space in the Italian national side under Azeglio Vicini, due to the presence of several other excellent keepers, such as Giovanni Galli initially, and Walter Zenga in particular, and subsequently the emerging keeper Gianluca Pagliuca. As a result, Tacconi was frequently Walter Zenga’s reserve for the Italian national team, and only made 7 appearances for Italy between 1987 and 1991. Tacconi made his senior international debut in a 3–1 win over Argentina on 10 June 1987, in Zürich. In the late 1980s, he was chosen by manager and former goalkeeper Dino Zoff as the starting goalkeeper for the Under-23 Italian Olympic side which reached the semi-finals in the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, eventually finishing in fourth place. Tacconi was Zenga’s deputy during Euro 1988, where Italy managed a semi-final finish, and at the 1990 World Cup on home soil, where Italy finished in third place following a semi-final loss on penalties to defending champions Argentina. In total, Tacconi made seven appearances for Italy between 1987 and 1991, all in friendly matches, conceding two goals. He played his final match for Italy on 13 February 1991, keeping a clean sheet in a 0–0 friendly home draw over Belgium, in Terni.
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Although not particularly agile, Tacconi was a powerful and athletic goalkeeper, who was known for his consistency and shot-stopping ability. A vocal and commanding presence in goal, he was also known for his leadership and strong character, and often called out defenders for their errors. Although he was initially not known for his ability to come out and collect crosses, he improved upon this aspect of his game in his later career with the help of Zoff. He was also known for his adeptness at stopping penalties.