League: Super League
Description: Adelaide Juventus Sports & Social club (to be updated).
PO Box 579 Greenacres SA 5086
Home - Black/white stripes shirts, black shorts & black socks
Away - grey/white/black shirts, white shorts & Black/white socks
(to be updated - too many to mention)
NSL Champions: 1986, 1991/92 & 1993/94
NSL Runner-up: 1992/93 & 1994/95
NSL Cup Winners: 1979, 1989 & 1991/92
NSL Cup Finalist: 1978
South Pacific Cup Winners: 1987
1st Division Champions: 1953, 1954, 1956, 1957, 1958, 1959, 1963, 1964, 1967, 1970, 1972, 1974 & 2005
2nd Division Champions: 1999
Federation Cup Winners: 1953, 1955, 1957, 1958, 1959, 1963, 1965, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973 & 1976
Coca Cola Cup Winners: 1971, 1972 & 1973
Summer Cup Winners: 1955, 1956, 1958, 1959 & 1960
Ampol Cup Winners: 1962, 1967, 1974, 1981, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1991, 1992, 1992 (Sept), 1994 & 1995
Escort Cup Winners: 1976, 1979, 1980, 1981 & 1982
Bailetti Cup Winners: 2000
U/23 League Champions: 2005
U/19 League Champions: 2005
U/19 Minor Premiers: 2000
National Youth League (SA Division Champions): 1992 & 1998
National Youth League Champions (Southern Division): 1998
National Youth League Runner-up: 1998
Source - History of Soccer in South Australia written by Denis Harlow.
Founded in 1946
Juventus (Adelaide City) was founded after the end of World War 2 by a group of former members of club called Savoia. The Savoia club was initially established in 1940 but disbanded within a matter of approximately two weeks.
In 1945 a meeting ws held at premises in Hindley Street to discuss the formation of another Italian sponsored soccer team. The name of the club was selected by ballot and the draw conducted by Mario Bailetti who was a member of the original Savoia team.
The result of the ballot revealed that the name of the new club would be Juventus. The group also wanted the team to play in the same coloured strip as the famous Juventus team in Italy - black and white stripes.
There was disappointment for the group when the SASFA refused their request to play in black and white stripes as another team in the local competition already played in these colours. As a result the Juventus team in its inaugural year played in a havy b lue strip with the letter J embroided on the left breast.
Juventus started off in the second division in 1946 after the association had received 16 applicatoins for the 8 positions in the 1st division. To determine the eight best teams for hte 1946 season the 16 applicants were grouped into two sections of eight and after one round of fixtures the top four team in each section formed the first division.
Its first game was played in 1946 in the South Australian second division on bumpy pothole strewn paddocks in the Adelaide Hills. The 1946 side comprised O. Mattiazza, C. Bini (Captain), G. Gava, F. Pozza, V. Patti, F. Giancaspro, M. Bini, O. Bonetti, G. Gava, R. Gagliardi and G. Perna (Vice Captain).
Juventus won the 2nd division and was promoted to the 1st division in 1947. Unfortunately Juventus came bottom of the league and was relegated back to the 2nd division for 1948. It was not until 1949 that Juventus won promotion to the 1st division by beating SA Railways by one point.
Juventus had a great year in 1953. They won the championship with 33 points out of a possible 36 and won the Pozza Cup defeating Beograd in the final by eight goals to one. The champions found the going tougher in the final of the Pelaco Cup against Prospect. Juventus was three goals down after 25 minutes at Alberton Oval before staging a great recovery in the second half. Juventus scored the winning goal one minute from the end of the game.
In 1956 Juventus went through the league programme without losing a point. They won the championship by 7 points and had a goal average of 94 goals for and 10 goals against. Juventus followed this up in 1957 not losing a game and finishing six points clear at the top of table. 1958 saw more of the same as the undefeated Juventus strolled to another title taking 34 points out of a possible 36, finished nine points clear of second and made it three seasons straight without a loss.
Juventus made it four championships in a row in 1959 and six titles in seven years. However their undefeated record came to an end after they lost two games during the season going down 1-3 to Cumberland and 2-3 to Beograd.
In 1977 the National Soccer League was formed. In 25 years Juventus had won the South Australian championship 12 times and the Federation Cup 13 times. Juventus had the largest supporter base in South Australia and was well supported by sponsors. As a result there was little question that Juventus should be one of the two South Australian teams in the new league.
Juventus was renamed Adelaide City to comply with the rules of the new competition. Adelaide City kicked off in the National Soccer League in 1977 and finished a very credible 4th.
In 1978 the last game of the season was between the two mighty rivals of South Australian football - Adelaide City and West Adelaide. West Adelaide only required a draw to win the league championship. Adelaide City only had its pride to play for but did its utmost to prevent its bitter rivals from taking out the league. Over 17,000 fans crammed in to watch one of the finest soccer contest every witnessed at Hindmarsh Stadium. John Perin was to put Adelaide City in front with a 40 metre free kick before Vic Bozanic was to grab the much need point and league championship for West Adelaide in a masterful solo run in the second half.
During this early period in the National Soccer League the Adelaide City team boasted many great players including the brilliant John Perin, South American Agenor Muniz, masterful Gary Marocchi, Scottish scoring machine Dixie Deans, hard as nails Brian Northcote, Bobby Russell, the Nyskohus brothers, Peter Marshall, Neil Banfield, Neville Flounders, Glen Dodds, Frank Lister and many others.
In the late 1970's Adelaide City had commenced building large club rooms at the Olympic Sports Field. It was the combination of the cost of these club rooms, a free spending coach and high cost of competing in the National Soccer League that almost brought Adelaide City undone. In 1980 Adelaide City was in a financial crisis with debts in excess of $500,000 and facing bankruptancy. The supporters rallied to the clubs plight and along with a generous patron, Gordon Pickard, raised sufficient funds to keep the club afloat.
The next six seasons were rather bleak as the club struggled just to survive financially. During this time there were many unsung heroes who made many financial and labour contributions behind the scenes to the club. On the field players took cuts in their salary and high cost big name players gave way to youngsters.
In 1986 Zoran Matic became the coach of Adelaide City for a paltry salary which he silently donated back to the club. Under Matic Adelaide City got off to a rocky start and were winless after nine matches. The fans wanted Matic out even though he was working with a team of unknown players including Aurelio Vidmar, Sergio Melta, Alex Tobin, Joe Mullen, Steve Maxwell, Charlie Villani and Adrian Santrac. Matic worked extremely hard with the youngsters singling them out for special training on their weaknesses and firmly implanting his distinctive style of game. He insisted his players play the ball to feet at all times, hold off the opposition while receiving the ball, patiently maintain possession, play a zonal style of game and to never shoot from outside the box. While the team was looking good on the park they were not winning games. His critics where quickly silenced as Adelaide City followed up the winless nine matches with an amazing winning run going on to win the National League Championship in a two game play off against Sydney Olympic. Adelaide City lost the first game of the grand final playoff 1-0 at home. Then in a stunning turnaround the club surprisingly beat Sydney Olympic in Sydney 2-0 with goals from Charlie Villani and Steve Maxwell and claimed the National Soccer League Championship.
Zoran Matic went on to coach Adelaide City for ten straight years winning three National League championships, two National Cups and in his last four years as coach taking the club to four consecutive grand finals.
In 1991/92 Adelaide City took on a young Melbourne Knights side in the grand final. The inexperienced Melbourne Knights struggled against the well oiled Adelaide City. Adelaide City claimed its second National Soccer League championship with a masterful performance.
In 1992/93 Adelaide City reached the final again and faced Marconi in Sydney. It was a very tight game between the two sides but Adelaide City dominated the proceedings and Marconi never threatened the Zebra defence. The game looked like it was heading for a draw with a replay in Adelaide when the referee awarded a very controversial penalty kick to Marconi. With the ball heading for a goal kick a Marconi player ( Steve Corica) took a dive and was unjustly rewarded. Marconi scored the penalty and Adelaide City then blew two good chances in the dying minutes on the way to losing. On the day Adelaide City was the better side but lost because of missed chances and a poor decision by the referee.
After ten rounds in the 1993/94 Adelaide City was sitting in a pretty dismal 11th place on the ladder and looking anything but a finalist. Only once before had a team come from so low in the ladder to make the final six playoff - ironically that team was Adelaide City in 1989. But Adelaide City rose to the task and stormed up the ladder reaching fifth spot on the ladder and knocking the Morwell Falcons out of the final six by one point. Adelaide City then stormed through a tough four finals games in 21 days including exacting revenge on Marconi for the previous years loss. In the grand final Adelaide City faced the Melbourne Knights in Melbourne. An estimated 5000 fans made the trip from Adelaide to Melbourne by the bus train and plane loads. It was a memorable final with Damian Mori scoring a magnificent goal from over 30 metres. The Adelaide fans celebrated all night in Lygon Street in Melbourne while the players had a huge welcome home at Hindmarsh Stadium later that night.
After ten straight years at the helm Matic decided to call it quits. His last game as coach was the 1995 National League Grand Final which Adelaide City lost 2-0 to the Melbourne Knights in front of a packed Hindmarsh Stadium. Adelaide City had already beaten the Melbourne Knights four times during the season but great performances from Andrew Marth and a young Mark Viduka prevented Adelaide City from claiming a fourth championship.
Zoran Matic was succeeded by club legend John Perin in 1996. Several experienced players moved overseas or retired. So John Perin started the process of rebuilding the squad and did a remarkable job of guiding a very inexperienced side to third place in the National Soccer League. Adelaide City was knocked out at the semi-final stage after it was barely able to field a full side due to injuries, suspensions and National Team duty and had to rely on a bench of two unknown youngsters and Joe Mullen who came out of retirement. However the memories of the 1996 season belong to one man - Damian Mori. He smashed the National Soccer League highest goalscorer record and almost doubled it with 31 goals. On his way to 31 goals he set a new world record for the fastest goal every scored in a soccer game. Damian chipped the goal keeper from the halfway line at the kickoff. It was an amazing goal that was seen by a TV audience of over 1 billion. To cap off a memorable season, John Perin was named National League Coach of the Year.
John Perin was replaced by John Nyskohus for the 1996/97 season. John Nyskohus continued the policy of relying on the youngsters around the club. As the season progressed the young squad improved and qualified for the final series. The first round of the finals started badly with the Adelaide City going down to Marconi 3-0 in the first leg of the home/away series. Adelaide City were written off by everyone including their own supporters. But the impossible happened in the second leg with the Adelaide City defeating Marconi 4-0 to win overall on aggregate 4-3. It was an amazing game which will go down in history as probably the best NSL performance by a Adelaide City team. The next round of the final series pitted Adelaide City against the very talented South Melbroune in Melbourne. This knockout game was a very tight affair and the Adelaide City seemed to have nothing left after the amazing win over Marconi the previous week. South Melbourne dominated the midfield but had trouble cracking the best defense in Australia. However in the end South Melbourne broke the reolute Adelaide City defence with a goal in sudden death extra time.
In 1997/98 John Nyskohous signed several quality players and kept all of the existing squad. With probably the strongest squad in the league, big things were expected by the Adelaide City fans. The side performed consistently throughout the year though never reached its full potential. With one game left of the minor round the Adelaide City were in the box seat to finish second and get a double chance in the final series. However they lost this key game and the double chance. Adelaide City now had to win 5 games straight to win the league. The first finals game was against the ever improving Wollongong who played the game of their season to beat Adelaide City 3-0 in Wollongong. In the return leg the Adelaide City put up a gallent fight but ended up having to settle for a draw and hung up their boots for another season.
In 1998 Zoran Matic returned to Adelaide City hoping to repeat his very sucessful first stint as coach. However this time Matic oversaw a steady decline in the club's performances. Adelaide City qualified for the final series in 1998/99 and 1999/2000 only to fail in the first round both times. In 2000/2001 Adelaide City finished just outside the top six. Matic's reign as coach came to an end in 2002/2003 after Adelaide City finishing second last with only 4 wins in 26 games.
During this period the club was increasingly suffering from problems off the field. The club seemed to be lurching from one crisis to another. There was a very damaging split amongst the supporters. Attendances dropped and sponsors abandoned the club.
Despite the off-field problems Adelaide City finished 5th on the NSL table and qualified for the new championship round. The top six sides played off with the top two sides going into the grand final. Adelaide City finished third in the championship round.
Adelaide City's off field problems came to a head before the start of the 2003/2004 season. The club withdrew from the National League before the season commenced and thus opened the way for the birth of Adelaide United.
Adelaide City's withdrawal from the National League saw it concentrate on its South Australian Premier League side. Initially Adelaide City made little impact on the Premier League fielding very young sides. But in 2005 the club brought in Damien Mori as player coach. In his first season Mori took Adelaide City to the Premier League title. The club made a clean sweep of the senior, U23 and U19 titles. Those at the club are hoping this is the start of another glorious era for one of South Australia's most famous clubs.
Home Stadium: Ram Park
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