Calcio Italia scores 100th anniversary

Calcio Italia, previously known as Football Italia, is celebrating its 100th issue. Its publisher plans to produce magazines for the 2004 FA Cup Final and next summer’s Euro 2004 finals.

The title’s owner, JDT Sports Productions, signed another five-year contract with Independent Magazines (UK) in January. Staff have produced a 116-page December edition to celebrate the 100th anniversary.

The magazine, which is aimed at English-speaking fans of Italian football, was launched in 1992 as a spin-off to Channel 4’s Football Italia. It was feared the title might close when Channel 4 opted out of the Serie A coverage 18 months ago, but the magazine was given a boost when British Eurosport took over the television coverage and forged links with the publication.

Founding editor John Taylor said: “After 10 years as the official accompaniment to the Channel 4 television programme, it was an appropriate time to strike out on our own.”

Independent Magazines and JDT Sports Productions have worked together to produce the title since 1996, publishing annual FA Cup Final guides and European Championship and World Cup preview magazines.

JDT Sports Productions continues to provide editorial content and design.

Taylor, a former BBC and ITV sports producer, said: “Hopefully our partnership can extend to include more titles, but to reach our centenary in such a competitive market is a huge compliment to my small but dedicated team.

Here’s to the next 100 issues.”

Taylor is negotiating a deal for the Football Italia website, run by Channel 4, which claims to attract more than a million page hits a month.

By Ruth Addicott

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