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Mr. Joe Tacopina, the noted New York defense attorney, will soon enter another courtroom: Serie A. He and one of his firms, TAG Partners, LLC, will become the 80% owners of Bologna FC 1909, seven time winners of the Italian Scudetto.
He had been associated with a potential deal for AS Roma that involved Mr. George Soros; however, that transaction apparently did not see fruition. He is the son of a Roman, and as you will see from the next quote, has had a passion for Italian calcio since his youth:
"Ho scelto il Bologna perché amo l’Italia, il mio paese d’origine, e il calcio italiano. Da ragazzino giocavo per strada sognando di diventare uno come Tardelli, poi mi sono affezionato anche a Baresi e Signori […] Non sono venuto in Italia per arricchirmi, considero questa avventura la parte filantropica della mia carriera. Qui voglio cambiare qualità di vita. Ho deciso di stabilirmi a Bologna, con la mia famiglia, moglie e cinque figli […] Spero di invecchiare a Bologna."
"I chose Bologna because I love Italy, my country of origin, and Italian football. From the time I was a boy, I played in the streets dreaming to become like Marco Tardelli (World Cup 1982 winner and scorer of a famous goal in the final), then I had affection for Franco Baresi and Beppe Signori... I didn't come to Italy to get richer, I consider this venture the philantrophic part of my career. Here I want to change the quality of life. I have decided to move to Bologna with my family, my wife and five children... I hope to grow old in Bologna."Source: Calcio Blog Italia, 20 June 2008.
Second American Involved with a Serie A Team
He will become the second American to own a controlling interest in a Serie A club. Mr. John Elkann of FIAT, IFIL, and Juventus, the heir to the Agnelli Family, was born and raised in New York City.
In bocca al lupo, Avvocato Tacopina.
Update: 16 July: The Deal Falls Through
Alfredo Cazzola, President of Bologna FC, said that TAG wanted an additional 20 days to finalize the deal.
"Therefore, we are here to announce that our contract with TAG Partners has been concluded in an irrevocable manner."Source: Sporting Life, 16 July 2008.