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Alex: 100 goals in Serie A

There is no denying that Juventus' success on home soil the past decade or so has been closely related to Alex' form. When the club won it's 25th league title in 1998, Del Piero scored a career high of 21 goals. Four years down the road his goal count is 16 and Juve reached for another scudetto. The current season looks out to play out in a similar fashion, with 16 nettings for the captain so far. With four rounds to go, it's not impossible he could well break his record from 97/98, five goals is no big deal for an in-form attacker. As for Juve, they are en-route for another scudetto. Will the dreams of Alex and Juve fans come true? Soon we shall find out.


Season of 1993/1994
On September 12, 1993, Alex made his debut in Serie A, wearing the black and white shirt. The match against Foggia ended in a draw (1-1), but the talented youngster didn't make the scoresheet. Evenso, the public was impressed and the female contigent was charmed. In his first season for the club, Alex had the privilige to play alongside a champion like Roberto Baggio. The pair soon became friends and formed a dangerous attack duo. Ale's first goal came September 19, 93, against Reggiana. He scored soon upon entering the pitch, equalizing for Juve to make it 1-1 and was chosen man of the match.

His 2nd strike in Serie A was scored at Genoa, on March 13, 1994. Another tie for Juve but his performance was a good one. Come March 20th, it was to become his breakthrough as a senior player. The 19-year-old known as Pinturicchio hit a hat trick against Parma. The crowd was stunned and the protagonist himself was thrilled. From that point on, his call-ups into the first team become more frequent and the management soon realized they had an exceptional talent on their hands. And Juve finished 2nd to Milan that year.

(1.) 1. 19/09/1993 Juventus 1-1 Reggiana (1:1) 81 min
(2.) 2. 13/03/1994 Genoa 1-1 Juventus (1:0) 36 min
(3.) 3. 20/03/1994 Juventus 4-0 Parma (1:0) 20 min
(4.) 4. 20/03/1994 Juventus 4-0 Parma (2:0) 58 min
(5.) 5. 20/03/1994 Juventus 4-0 Parma (4:0) 87 min


Season of 1994/95
Another season started out well for Alessandro, having scored 5 goals the previous Serie A campaign, he was now chosen in the starting eleven. He sealed his place in the team after the club shipped off its biggest star, Roberto Baggio, to Milan. The season was to become a successful one for Alex, he scored 8 times.

His first goal was scored on September 18, to Napoli. It was a close match but Juve ran out winners, with Alex making it 2-0 and securing the win. The following three rounds were all won but not without considerable effort. Reggiana were beaten 3-1, Alex scored the final goal of the game. December 4 was going to be a magic moment, it was all set for Fiorentina and after a hard fought encounter, Juve ran out winners 3-2 thanks to Ale's marvellous volley in the closing minutes. If there is one goal etched in the minds of the fans, it must be that one. Next up was Lazio on December 11. Another close match ended 4-3 in favor of the black and whites, two of the goals were signed Del Piero.

The next prolific matches for Alex were against Brescia and Bari, both won by the team. His final netting opened the scoring in the tie with Cagliari, which ended 3-1. It was an incredible season for Juventus, having defeat the greatness of Milan and finished 10 points ahead of Lazio in the league table under new coach Marcello Lippi.

( 6.) 1. 18/09/1994 Napoli 0-2 Juventus (0:2) 72 min
( 7.) 2. 20/11/1994 Juventus 3-1 Reggiana (3:1) 85 min
( 8.) 3. 04/12/1994 Juventus 3-2 Fiorentina (3:2) 87 min
( 9.) 4. 11/12/1994 Lazio 3-4 Juventus (1:1) 33 min
(10.) 5. 11/12/1994 Lazio 3-4 Juventus (1:3) 77 min
(11.) 6. 29/01/1995 Juventus 2-1 Brescia (1:1) 34 min
(12.) 7. 12/02/1995 Bari 0-2 Juventus (1:0) 41 min (penalty)
(13.) 8. 04/06/1995 Juventus 3-1 Cagliari (1:0) 20 min


Season of 1995/1996
It was a season of great success, both for Alex and Juve. He opened his account against Milan, but the match was lost. On October 22 it was set for Juve - Padova, Alex' former club. He scored the first goal of the match against his former teammates, to help Juve close the deal with 3-1. The fans were made to wait a month for his next goal in Serie A. On November 19, the player who had just turned 21 sunk Fiorentina, scoring the only goal of the game.

Then came a dry period, but the fans would rejoice over his nettings both for the Azzurri and for Juve in the Champions League. He returned to scoring in the league on February 11, in a game facing Cagliari. His goal to make it 3-0 set the helped secure a 4-1 victory.

As it turned out, Padova was his lucky charm. In the return round he added two (the match was won 5-0) to the one he had scored early on in the season. And even though he finished his scoring in Padova, his effort in the Champions League was decisive as the club reached for the trophy in the second time in its history. The Serie A was lost to Milan by a couple of points.

(14.) 1. 15/10/1995 Milan 2-1 Juventus (2:1) 81 min
(15.) 2. 22/10/1995 Juventus 3-1 Padova (1:0) 39 min
(16.) 3. 9/11/1995 Juventus 1-0 Fiorentina (1:0) 11 min
(17.) 4. 11/02/1996 Juventus 4-1 Cagliari (3:0) 79 min
(18.) 5. 03/03/1996 Padova 0-5 Juventus (0:1) 29 min
(19.) 6. 03/03/1996 Padova 0-5 Juventus (0:3) 66 min


Season of 1996/1997
Once again a successful season for Alex, scoring 8 goals in the league campaign, including 3 braces! His first netting came in the 3rd round against Perugia, scoring to seal a win. Then he followed up with a brace at Udinese and another against Verona.

His next scoring game was the return round against Perugia, where he grabbed another brace. His last for the season was scored at Fiorentina, but the game was lost. The Bianconeri won their 24th scudetto that year. In the Champions League, an excruciating defeat to Borussia Dortmund ended hopes of retaining the title.

(20.) 1. 22/09/1996 Perugia 1-2 Juventus (1:2) 89 min
(21.) 2. 11/12/1996 Udinese 1-4 Juventus (0:2) 39 min (penalty)
(22.) 3. 11/12/1996 Udinese 1-4 Juventus (0:3) 44 min (penalty)
(23.) 4. 15/12/1996 Juventus 3-2 Verona (2:2) 64 min (penalty)
(24.) 5. 15/12/1996 Juventus 3-2 Verona (2:3) 72 min
(25.) 6. 16/02/1997 Juventus 2-1 Perugia (1:0) 37 min (penalty)
(26.) 7. 16/02/1997 Juventus 2-1 Perugia (2:0) 45 min
(27.) 8. 23/02/1997 Fiorentina 1-1 Juventus (0:1) 15 min


Season of 1997/1998
The best season in his career, Ale scored 21 in 32 outings. Together with Filippo Inzaghi, they combined for 39 nettings. Pinturicchio finished at 21 strikes and played a big part in Juve's 25th scudetto victory.

He opened his account for the season scoring against Brescia. Then he helped beat Fiorentina, Bari and Udinese. Alex then sunk Lazio with a brace and followed up with a hat trick vs Empoli. Then he scored in about every game of the season, against the likes of Roma, Sampdoria, Napoli and Milan. To seal the season, a mazy run resulting in a fantastic goal against Inter, to retain the title and win the 25th scudetto. Unfortunately, the Champions League was again lost in the final, this time to Real Madrid.

(28.) 1. 21/09/1997 Juventus 4-0 Brescia (4:0) 56 min
(29.) 2. 05/10/1997 Juventus 2-1 Fiorentina (2:1) 36 min
(30.) 3. 19/10/1997 Bari 0-5 Juventus (0:4) 87 min
(31.) 4. 02/11/1997 Juventus 4-1 Udinese (3:1) 72 min(penalty)
(32.) 5. 23/11/1997 Juventus 2-2 Parma (1:1) 44 min
(33.) 6. 06/12/1997 Juventus 2-1 Lazio (1:0) 15 min(penalty)
(34.) 7. 06/12/1997 Juventus 2-1 Lazio (2:1) 34 min
(35.) 8. 21/12/1997 Juventus 5-2 Empoli (2:0) 16 min
(36.) 9. 21/12/1997 Juventus 5-2 Empoli (3:0) 27 min
(37.) 10. 21/12/1997 Juventus 5-2 Empoli (4:1) 55 min
(38.) 11. 11/01/1998 Juventus 2-1 Vicenza (1:0) 27 min(penalty)
(39.) 12. 18/01/1998 Bologna 1-3 Juventus (0:3) 59 min
(40.) 13. 01/02/1998 Lecce 0-2 Juventus (0:2) 89 min
(41.) 14. 08/02/1998 Juventus 3-1 Roma (2:0) 48 min
(42.) 15. 15/02/1998 Juventus 3-0 Sampdoria (1:0) 4 min
(43.) 16. 08/03/1998 Udinese 1-1 Juventus (1:1) 89 min
(44.) 17. 15/03/1998 Juventus 2-2 Napoli (1:0) 45 min
(45.) 18. 28/03/1998 Juventus 4-1 Milan (1:0) 12 min (penalty)
(46.) 19. 28/03/1998 Juventus 4-1 Milan (2:1) 39 min
(47.) 20. 11/04/1998 Juventus 2-0 Piacenza (2:0) 81 min
(48.) 21. 26/04/1998 Juventus 1-0 Inter (1:0) 21 min


Season of 1998/1999
It was to be the worst season of his career, although it started well. He scored against Vicenza, then beat Inter from the penalty spot. But then it happened, the fateful moment, on November 8 he badly injured his knee at Udinese. From there on it was all downhill, both for the player and the club.

The fans expected Alex to be back where he left off soon, but they were to be disappointed. Alex would be ruled out to the end of the season, meanwhile Juve kept stumbling and falling down the table. Alex underwent surgery but an operation of that severity would require a long period of recuperation. Coach Lippi quit after a home defeat to Parma, the club was then 11th in the standings. Carlo Ancelotti stepped in and rescued a 7th place in the league.

(49.) 1. 18/10/1998 Vicenza 1-1 Juventus (1:1) 45 min
(50.) 2. 25/10/1998 Juventus 1-0 Inter (1:0) 87 min (penalty)


Season of 1999/2000
The long awaited comeback everyone had been waiting for, came in the Intertoto Cup tie with Rostov Rostelmash. Alex made an assist and scored in the game. But his league season did not develop in line with the fans' expectations. He would be known to score from penalties this year, for which he was heavily criticized. His first netting came in the 3rd round against Udinese. Two months later he helped beat Piacenza from the spot. Next up was Parma on January 9, another penalty converted, but it was only good for a draw.

Perugia, Venezia and Bari would also see him open the scoring from the spot. In the 26th round, the derby with Torino, it was clear that the race for the scudetto would be between Juve, Lazio and Roma. The Bianconeri were leading by 9 points with 8 games to go, it quite looked like the 26th title was right around the corner. But it would not be that easy, a defeat at Milan, followed by a home defeat at the hands of Lazio cut the lead to just 3 points.

The run-in would be a close one, Alex scored another penalty to beat Fiorentina, and followed up with his first and only goal from open play that season, to defeat Parma. All eyes were on Alex to clinch the title in the final round, at Perugia. In a controversial match, Juve lost to Perugia and the title was lost to Lazio.

(51.) 1. 19/09/1999 Juventus 4-1 Udinese (1:0) 22 min (penalty)
(52.) 2. 31/10/1999 Juventus 1-0 Piacenza (1:0) 76 min (penalty)
(53.) 3. 09/01/2000 Parma 1-1 Juventus (0:1) 69 min (penalty)
(54.) 4. 16/01/2000 Juventus 3-0 Perugia (1:0) 26 min (penalty)
(55.) 5. 20/02/2000 Venezia 0-4 Juventus (0:1) 34 min (penalty)
(56.) 6. 05/03/2000 Juventus 2-0 Bari (2:0) 53 min (penalty)
(57.) 7. 19/03/2000 Juventus 3-2 Torino (3:1) 73 min (penalty)
(58.) 8. 22/04/2000 Juventus 1-0 Fiorentina (1:0) 45 min (penalty)
(59.) 9. 07/05/2000 Juventus 1-0 Parma (1:0) 60 min


Season of 2000/2001
Alex didn't have trouble finding the net but his form was fluctuating. The title was lost after another close finish, this time to Roma. But the season started well, Ale opened with a goal in the first round. Next he scored against Udinese but the match was lost on home soil. And he would not score for 17 rounds, very disappointing for everyone. For the first time since his breakthrough, he was left out of the lineup and there was speculation about his future.

The news of his father's illness seemed to explain his poor form, and the former passed away just before the game with Bari. Alex was on the bench and came on as a substitute in the second half. He scored within 20 minutes and won the match for Juve. His sadness and frustration was for all to see as he celebrated his goal. The question on everyone's lips was "is Alex back?" It would be a question that would haunt him for the rest of the season. But a crucial moment in his career it surely was.

The team returned to winning ways but again went down to Lazio. Alex scored a great consolation goal but it wouldn't help. His form visibly improved, even though everyone expected him to perform up to the levels of the 97/98 season. He scored a crucial penalty to defeat Verona, then netted against Inter. It was set for Juve - Roma, a possible title decider between the top two teams. Alex sent Juve in the lead but it ended all square at 2-2 and 2 important points were lost. Pinturicchio scored another at Vicenza but it would not help, the title was conquered by Roma, Coach Ancelotti was fired.

(60.) 1. 30/09/2000 Napoli 1-2 Juventus (1:2) 74 min
(61.) 2. 01/11/2000 Juventus 1:2 Udinese (1:2) 78 min (penalty)
(62.) 3. 11/02/2001 Juventus 3-0 Napoli (3:0) 86 min
(63.) 4. 18/02/2001 Bari 0-1 Juventus (0:1) 81 min
(64.) 5. 18/03/2001 Lazio 4-1 Juventus (2:1) 59 min
(65.) 6. 08/04/2001 Verona 0-1 Juventus (0:1) 45 min (penalty)
(66.) 7. 14/04/2001 Juventus 3-1 Inter (3:0) 63 min
(67.) 8. 06/05/2001 Juventus 2-2 Roma (1:0) 4 min
(68.) 9. 10/06/2001 Vicenza 0-3 Juventus (0:1) 36 min


Season of 2001/2002
Coach Lippi's return inspired a lot of hope, the man who won the title in his first season was back at the club. He declared he would out the real Del Piero from the player who had failed to defeat his critics ever since his heartbraking injury. Lippi kept his promise, Alex scored 16 goals, his highest ever apart from the 97/98 seson. Together with his partner in crime, David Trezeguet, they combined for 40 nettings that season, one more than his partnership with SuperPippo Inzaghi had produced. The pair also scored 12 times in the Champions League (Alex 4).

Alex' season started well, he grabbed a brace against Venezia in the opening round. He followed up with another goal in the next round and then scored twice in the derby, but Torino would not be defeated and it ended 3-3. Alex went on to score against Milan, Parma, Brescia, Chievo, Lecce, Fiorentina and Perugia. The club was well on the way to conquer that elusive 26th title with its captain and his partner in great shape. Roma and Inter made their presence felt as it looked to be a three horse race for the scudetto.

In the run-in, Brescia was beaten in style, 5-0 with a brace from the captain and three from Trezegol. Inter were now just one point ahead, Roma was in third. The final round proved lucky for Juve. Alex and Trez both scored early to beat Udinese 2-0. Meanwhile the news of Lazio beating Inter filled the stadium with euhporia, the Bianconeri had won their 26th domestic title.

(69.) 1. 26/08/2001 Juventus 4:0 Venezia (3:0) 44 min
(70.) 2. 26/08/2001 Juventus 4:0 Venezia (4:0) 85 min
(71.) 3. 09/09/2001 Atalanta 0:2 Juventus (0:2) 8 min
(72.) 4. 14/10/2001 Torino 3:3 Juventus (1:0) 9 min
(73.) 5. 14/10/2001 Torino 3:3 Juventus (3:0) 25 min
(74.) 6. 18/11/2001 Juventus 3:1 Parma (2:1) 75 min
(75.) 7. 09/12/2001 Milan 1:1 Juventus (1:1) 47 min (penalty)
(76.) 8. 23/12/2001 Brescia 0:4 Juventus (0:2) 42 min
(77.) 9. 27/01/2002 Chievo 1:3 Juventus (1:3) 70 min (penalty)
(78.) 10. 03/02/2002 Juventus 3:0 Lecce (3:0) 60 min (penalty)
(79.) 11. 16/02/2002 Juventus 2:1 Fiorentina (2:1) 29 min.
(80.) 12. 7/04/2002 Perugia 0:4 Juventus (0:2) 8 min
(81.) 13. 7/04/2002 Perugia 0:4 Juventus (0:4) 61 min
(82.) 14. 28/04/2002 Juventus 5:0 Brescia (2:0) 71 min
(83.) 15. 28/04/2002 Juventus 5:0 Brescia (4:0) 80 min
(84.) 16. 05/05/2002 Udinese 0:2 Juventus (0:2) 11 min


Season of 2002/2003
Another great season for Alex, he kicked off in style. The black and whites made it clear they would battle to retain the title. Ale struck twice against Atalanta, then twice at Empoli. The game with Parma was not as easy, it took a goal in extra time to tie the scores at 2-2. Facing Inter in the 6th round, Alex scored again but Christian Vieri was equal to it and another draw relegated Juve to 5th place in the standings.

Alessandro continued scoring, Modena and Torino were both beaten until Roma held Juve back, the match resembling the crucial encounter between the teams 2 years earlier. At 2-0 favoring Roma, Alex scored for the Old Lady before Nedved secured a draw in the dying minutes. But then came a dry spell for the title holders. Alex returned to scoring in the 19th round, against Reggina. Then he also helped defeat Chievo and Piacenza before picking up an injury which would keep him out for over a month. Fortuantely, the team held up well and kept winning. Alex returned to face Milan but the match was lost, his performance was uninspiring. The next few games were disappointing as well, the fans wanted a goal.

Alex would score again, first a penalty against Roma, then another to put the match out of reach for the Giallorossi. His second goal marked his 98th netting in Serie A, all of them in the black and white shirt. The fans wouldn't have to wait long, after taking the lead against Brescia on April 27, a great assist from Tacchi was hit home in style from the captain. What a way to celebrate his centenary goal!

( 85.) 1. 15//09/2002 Juventus 3:0 Atalanta (1:0) 27 min (penalty)
( 86.) 2. 15/09/2002 Juventus 3:0 Atalanta (2:0) 37 min
( 87.) 3. 21/09/2002 Empoli 0:2 Juventus (0:1) 6 min (penalty)
( 88.) 4. 21/09/2002 Empoli 0:2 Juventus (0:2) 73 min
( 89.) 5. 28/10/2002 Juventus 2:2 Parma (2:2) 90 min
( 90.) 6. 19/10/2002 Inter 1:1 Juventus (0:1) 90 min (penalty)
( 91.) 7. 03/11/2002 Modena 0:1 Juventus (0:1) 74 min
( 92.) 8. 17/11/2002 Torino 0:4 Juventus (0:1) 6 min
( 93.) 9. 27/01/2002 Roma 2:2 Juventus (2:1) 45min
( 94.) 10. 12/01/2003 Juventus 3:0 Reggina (4:0) 71 min (penalty)
( 95.) 11. 19/01/2003 Chievo 1:4 Juventus (1:2) 20 min
( 96.) 12. 26/01/2003 Juventus 2:0 Piacenza(1:0) 9 min
( 97.) 13. 19/04/2003 Juventus 2:1 Roma (1:0) 31 min (penalty)
( 98.) 14. 19/04/2003 Juventus 2:1 Roma (2:0) 40 min
( 99.) 15. 27/04/2002 Brescia 1:2 Juventus (0:1) 71 min
(100.) 16. 27/04/2002 Brescia 1:2 Juventus (1:2) 71 min


This article was reproduced for Juventuz courtesy of JuvePoland - Unofficial Juventus Torino F.C. site, where it was first published. The images are original.