Back in September 2011, more than a few eyebrows were raised as Juventus opened their new 41,000-seater stadium with a friendly against then-League One outfit Notts County. Quite frankly, most Italians couldn’t even tell you where the English minnows are based, let alone name any of their players. The landmark fixture doesn’t only provide the bizarre answer of Lee Hughes to the future pub quiz question regarding the first opponent to score at the famous stadium, though; it had actually been an event that was over a century in the making because, phenomenally, these are two clubs that were connected as early as 1903.In today’s world, Juventus is one of the most instantly recognisable clubs in world football, and it has been that way for many decades.
The Old Lady has dominated Italian football at various stages during its history, often fighting for European honours too. Turin has also been home to a number of iconic superstars throughout the generations, with the likes of Alessandro Del Piero, John Charles, Michel Platini and Zinedine Zidane sitting proudly in the Bianconeri’s hall of fame. That nickname, which translates to ‘white and blacks’ is a reference to one of the most famous kits in any sport. However, life didn’t start out that way for the Serie A giants and, had it not been for Notts County, it could have been an entirely different climate in the North Italian city.
When the club launched as Sport-Club Juventus on November 1st 1897, the players donned a pink kit that doesn’t look too different to the Old Lady’s current away strip. Of course, this was a time before sponsorships and replica kits. Like all clubs at the time, the Torinese students behind that built the team stuck with those same jerseys year after year. However, the distinct colour of an outfit produced by one of the founding player’s fathers would eventually fade over time. Combined with the desire to distance themselves from Palermo, whom still wear pink to this day, this would lead Juventus to times of change.
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