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Origins of Juventus’ Nickname: The Old Lady


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Have you ever wondered why Juventus is affectionately called ‘The Old Lady’? This nickname, known as ‘La Vecchia Segnora’ in Italian, has a rich history that is deeply intertwined with the Juventus Football Club and has become an integral part of the club’s identity worldwide.

The origins of this unique nickname, however, remain somewhat mysterious.

Let’s unravel the story behind ‘The Old Lady’ and understand how it came to be.

Tale of ‘Lady’

The story behind the ‘Lady’ part of the nickname can be traced back to the early 20th century.

Juventus had already established itself as a dominant force in Italian football, boasting talented players known for their grace and elegance on the pitch.

Fans, mostly men, affectionately referred to the club as female, with some sections of the supporter base even calling it ‘la Fidanzata d’Italia’ (the Girlfriend of Italy).

The Amusing ‘Old’ Twist

Now, let’s dive into the ‘Old’ part of the nickname. The irony lies in the fact that the name ‘Juventus’ actually stems from the Latin word for ‘youth.’

It’s a clever play on words!

In the 1930s, when the club was acquired by the Agnelli family, the team’s star players were aging.

Instead of replacing them with younger talent, the club’s hierarchy chose to hold onto these club heroes well into their later years.

This trend has continued throughout the years, even in the face of recent financial troubles.

Hence, the ‘Old’ part of the nickname was born.

Birth of ‘The Old Lady’

There are a few theories surrounding how the two parts of the nickname came together to form ‘The Old Lady.’

Some believe that a journalist coined the term in a match report highlighting Juventus’ impressive performance against Genoa in 1931.

Others speculate that the club’s iconic black and white stripes, resembling an old lady’s attire, led to the nickname’s creation.

Regardless of its exact origin, ‘The Old Lady’ has become synonymous with Juventus’ branding and is recognized worldwide.

Other Nicknames

While ‘The Old Lady’ is the most famous nickname associated with Juventus, the club has a few other monikers as well.

One of these is ‘I bianconeri,’ which translates to ‘the black-and-whites’ in English. This nickname pays homage to the club’s iconic striped jerseys.

Another nickname is ‘Le zebre,’ meaning ‘the zebras.’ This nickname also refers to the distinctive black and white stripes that have become synonymous with Juventus.

Lastly, ‘La Madama’ is a nickname derived from Piedmontese, a local language in the region where Juventus is based. It translates to ‘Madam’ in English and further emphasizes the club’s feminine association.

So, the next time you hear someone mention ‘The Old Lady’ in relation to Juventus, you’ll know the fascinating story behind this beloved nickname.

This article was updated 3 months ago

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