Lazio will withdraw from the Italian Serie A1, the club president Massimo Moroli said yesterday, after the club was moved out from the Garbatella pool in Rome, with police presence.
Lazio didn’t play in this pool, but the club managed this sports facility for 34 years. The income of the pool secured the funds for the existence of the water polo club.
This case is quite complicated and has a long history. The pool is a subject of disputes between the club, which was founded 120 years ago, and the City of Rome for a long time.
In 2018, the City of Roma decided to call off Lazio’s concession (and some other concessions similar to this one) and started a tendering process, which was won by another company.
Lazio appealed to the regional court (TAR). The court canceled the ban and assigned the management of the pool to Lazio.
But, the City of Roma appointed a new evaluation commission, which confirmed the outcome of the tender contest. According to the decision made by the City of Roma in August, Lazio had to leave the pool by September 2. The club rebelled against that decision and didn’t want to accept it. In the end, police came to the pool yesterday, and Lazio had to hand over the facility’s keys.
But, Lazio claims that the case isn’t concluded. The club’s lawyer said that there was a compliance trial that would probably end in December.
In Lazio’s official announcement, Massimo Moroli, the club president said:
“We believe we have been subjected to an unprecedented operation, although there is a clear ruling in our favor and although there are about 80 municipal facilities whose concession has expired 2 to 10 years in advance of Lazio’s expiry.
The Municipality, with its attitude, is demonstrating hostility towards the club. That has become increasingly evident in this hallucinating story, and this latest deplorable act inevitably leads to Lazio’s withdrawal from the men’s Serie A1 Championship.
We are a sports society that has been working for 120 years with great success. The club is characterized by hundreds of national titles by Olympic, World and European Champions, and the Italian Olympic Committee’s honors. We have a club that plays in Serie A1. A Paralympic Team is among the strongest in Italy. We should be treated as Rome’s heritage of Rome, and not be evicted in this way.”
If Lazio really withdraws, there will be only 12 teams in the Italian League. To remind, Sport Management gave up the Serie A1.