Famous Italian Sportspersons

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Find out more about the greatest Italian Sportspersons, including Valentino Rossi, Carlo Ancelotti, Claudio Ranieri, Mario Balotelli and Francesco Totti
Vote for Your Favourite Italian Sportspersons
 1 
Gianluigi Buffon
(One of the Greatest Goalkeepers of All Time)
Gianluigi Buffon
32
Birthdate: January 28, 1978
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Carrara, Italy
Gianluigi Buffon is an Italian footballer, often considered the greatest goalkeeper of all time. The first goalkeeper to receive the Golden Foot Award, Buffon was included in Pelé's FIFA 100 list in 2004. He is also well-known for his charity work; in 2019, he was named a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations' World Food Programme.
 2 
Francesco Totti
(Italian Former Professional Football Player Who Played as an Attacking Midfielder and as a Forward)
Francesco Totti
13
Birthdate: September 27, 1976
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Rome, Italy

Italian footballer Francesco Totti is known for his 25-year stint with Roma. Nicknamed “The Golden Boy” and “The Gladiator,” he led Roma to win the Serie A and the Coppa Italia. He was also part of the 2006 FIFA World Cup-winning Italian team. He was named to Pele’s FIFA 100

 3 
Paolo Maldini
(Italian Former Football Player Who Played as a Defender)
Paolo Maldini
11
Birthdate: June 26, 1968
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Milan, Lombardy, Italy

Paolo Maldini is an Italian former professional footballer widely regarded as one of the greatest ever defenders. He played primarily as a left-back and central defender and was affiliated with Milan and the Italian national team. Currently, he is serving as the technical director for Milan. He is also the co-owner of the USL Championship club Miami FC.  

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 4 
Alessandro Del Piero
(Italian Former Professional Football Player Who Played as a Deep-Lying Forward)
Alessandro Del Piero
12
Birthdate: November 9, 1974
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Conegliano, Veneto, Italy

Alessandro Del Piero is an Italian former football player. Renowned for his creativity, he is often counted among the best players of his generation. He is also widely regarded as one of Italy's greatest players of all time. A prolific goal-scorer, Del Piero scored 346 goals during his playing career, making him the second-highest Italian goal-scorer of all time.

 5 
Roberto Baggio
(Italian Former Professional Football Player Who Played as an Attacking Midfielder or as a Forward)
Roberto Baggio
10
Birthdate: February 18, 1967
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Caldogno, Italy
Italian former footballer Roberto Baggio is the only Italian to score goals in three World Cups, in 1990, 1994, and 1998. He was the FIFA World Player of the Year in 1993. Nicknamed “The Divine Ponytail" for his peculiar hairstyle, he also became the Goodwill Ambassador of the UN’s FAO.
 6 
Valentino Rossi
(Italian motorcycle road racer)
Valentino Rossi
9
Birthdate: February 16, 1979
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Tavullia, Italy

Valentino Rossi is an Italian motorcycle road racer. Having won nine Grand Prix World Championships, he is widely regarded as one of the greatest motorcycle racers ever. Apart from being a famous racer, Valentino Rossi also owns the Sky Racing Team VR46, which competes in the Moto3 and Moto2 classes.

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 7 
Carlo Ancelotti
(Italian Former Professional Footballer Regarded as One of the Greatest Managers of All Time)
Carlo Ancelotti
14
Birthdate: June 10, 1959
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Reggiolo, Italy

Carlo Ancelotti had humble beginnings as a midfielder in Italian club football. He was part of the Italian national squad in two World Cups and one UEFA Euro, and is one of three managers who have won the UEFA Champions League thrice, twice with Milan and once with Real Madrid.

 8 
Andrea Pirlo
(Italian Professional Football Coach and Former Player Who Played as a Midfielder)
Andrea Pirlo
15
Birthdate: May 19, 1979
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Flero, Italy

Italian professional football coach and former player. Andrea Pirlo, is currently the head coach of football club Juventus. As a player, he was known for his ball control. He retired after playing 116 matches for the Italian national football team. He was elected into the Italian Football Hall of Fame in 2019.

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 9 
Ciro Immobile
(Italian Professional Footballer Who Plays as a Striker)
Ciro Immobile
9
Birthdate: February 20, 1990
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Torre Annunziata

Ciro Immobile is an Italian professional footballer who plays as a striker. He is currently affiliated with Serie A club Lazio and the Italian national team. He began playing football as a young boy and made his professional debut in his late teens. He has played with several teams, including Juventus, Genoa, Torino, and Sevilla in the past. 

 10 
Fabio Cannavaro
(Italian Professional Football Coach and Former Football Player Who Played as Centre-Back)
Fabio Cannavaro
7
Birthdate: September 13, 1973
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Naples, Italy

Italian former football star Fabio Cannavaro was part of his country’s 2006 World Cup-winning team and now coaches the Chinese football club Guangzhou. He has won awards such as the Ballon d'Or and was the only defender to earn the FIFA World Player of the Year tag.

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 11 
Emiliano Sala
(Footballer)
Emiliano Sala
8
Birthdate: October 31, 1990
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Cululú, Santa Fe
Died: January 21, 2019

Emiliano Sala was an Argentine football player who played for prominent French clubs like Bordeaux and Nantes. He was renowned for his powerful strike and eye for goal. In 2019, he was included in the Nantes Team of the Decade. Emiliano Sala died in a plane crash on 21 January 2019. His body was recovered four days after the crash.

 12 
Roberto Mancini
(Football Manager & Former Footballer Forward)
Roberto Mancini
8
Birthdate: November 27, 1964
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Iesi, Italy
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 13 
Claudio Ranieri
(Football Manager)
Claudio Ranieri
11
Birthdate: October 20, 1951
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Rome

Claudio Ranieri is an Italian football manager and the current head coach of Sampdoria, a football club which competes in Serie A. As a manager, Ranieri has won several honors, such as the 2016 LMA Manager of the Year and the Best FIFA Men's Coach. A former player, Ranieri was inducted into the Italian Football Hall of Fame in 2016.

 14 
Gennaro Gattuso
(Italian Professional Football Coach and Former Player Who Played as a Defensive Midfielder)
Gennaro Gattuso
6
Birthdate: January 9, 1978
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Corigliano Calabro, Italy
Italian former footballer Gennaro Gattuso is best known for his stint with Milan and won titles such as the UEFA Champions League and the FIFA Club World Cup with them. He was part of Italian squad that won the FIFA World Cup 2006. He now manages the football club Napoli.
 15 
Mauro Icardi
(Footballer)
Mauro Icardi
13
Birthdate: February 19, 1993
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Rosario

Argentine footballer, Mauro Icard,i plays as a striker for Ligue 1 club, Paris Saint-Germain, and the Argentina national team. He began playing football as a boy and made his senior debut in 2012. He is known for his excellent attacking movement, positioning, and eye for goal. His marriage to a teammate’s ex-wife is a subject of controversy.

 16 
Matteo Berrettini
(Tennis player)
Matteo Berrettini
5
Birthdate: April 12, 1996
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Rome, Italy

Matteo Berrettini is an Italian tennis player who is currently the best-ranked Italian according to the ATP Rankings. Matteo Berrettini created history in 2021 when he became the first Italian to reach a Wimbledon Championship final where he lost against the two-time defending champion Novak Djokovic. An aggressive player, Matteo Berrettini is known for his forehand, strong serve, and speed.

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 17 
Lorenzo Insigne
(Association football player)
Lorenzo Insigne
4
Birthdate: June 4, 1991
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Naples

Lorenzo Insigne is an Italian professional footballer who plays as a forward. He is currently affiliated with Serie A club Napoli and the Italian national team. He has over a decade’s experience as a professional and can play on either flank or through the center. He is known for his technical ability, speed, and accuracy from free kicks. 

 18 
Marco Verratti
(Association football player)
Marco Verratti
5
Birthdate: November 5, 1992
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Pescara

Best known as a central midfielder for Paris Saint-Germain and the Italian national team, Marco Verratti was part of his country’s 2014 FIFA World Cup squad. He began his career with Pescara and worked his way up with hard work. He was knighted by the Italian government.

 19 
Paolo Rossi
(Football player)
Paolo Rossi
8
Birthdate: September 23, 1956
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Prato, Italy
Died: December 9, 2020
 20 
Fabiano Caruana
(Chess Player)
Fabiano Caruana
4
Birthdate: July 30, 1992
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Miami, Florida, United States
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 21 
Mario Balotelli
(Italian Football Player Who Plays as a Striker)
Mario Balotelli
27
Birthdate: August 12, 1990
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Palermo, Italy
The talented but crazy Italian striker Mario Balotelli is one of the most intriguing and exciting footballers around. Love him or hate him, TIME Magazine in 2013 called him one of the 100 most influential people in the world.
 22 
Filippo Inzaghi
(Association football player, Association football manager)
Filippo Inzaghi
6
Birthdate: August 9, 1973
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Piacenza
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 23 
Daniele De Rossi
(Former Italian Professional Football Player Who Played as a Defensive Midfielder)
Daniele De Rossi
4
Birthdate: July 24, 1983
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Rome, Lazio, Italy

Daniele De Rossi is an Italian football coach and former player. He is currently serving as the national football team's assistant coach. A defensive midfielder during his playing career, Daniele helped his team win the 2006 FIFA World Cup. He is the highest-scoring midfielder for Italy post-World War II.

 24 
Franco Baresi
(Football Coach)
Franco Baresi
6
Birthdate: May 8, 1960
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Travagliato, Italy
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 25 
Sebastian Giovinco
(Association football player)
Sebastian Giovinco
6
Birthdate: January 26, 1987
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Turin

Nicknamed the Atomic Ant due to his short stature, Sebastian Giovinco had begun his career with the Juventus youth team. Known for his dribbling skills and ball control tactics, he has been named one of the world’s 100 best footballers by publications such as The Guardian.

 26 
Stephan El Shaarawy
(Association football player)
Stephan El Shaarawy
8
Birthdate: October 27, 1992
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Savona

Stephan El Shaarawy is an Italian football player who was regarded as a potentially world-class player and one of the most promising youngsters at the beginning of his career. El Shaarawy represents his national team as well as the Serie A club Roma. Renowned for his pace and agility, El Shaarawy's playing style has often drawn comparisons with Cristiano Ronaldo.

 27 
Fabio Capello
(Italian Former Professional Football Midfielder and Manager)
Fabio Capello
6
Birthdate: June 18, 1946
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: San Canzian d'Isonzo, Italy

Fabio Capello is a former footballer and manager. As a player, he won several trophies in a career that spanned over 15 years. Renowned for creating opportunities for his teammates, Capello is considered one of the best Italian footballers of his generation. He also had a successful career as a manager and is considered one of the greatest managers ever.

 28 
Gianfranco Zola
(Football manager)
Gianfranco Zola
8
Birthdate: July 5, 1966
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Oliena, Italy
 29 
Claudio Marchisio
(Association football player)
Claudio Marchisio
4
Birthdate: January 19, 1986
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Turin
 30 
Arturo Gatti
5
Birthdate: April 15, 1972
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Cassino, Italy
Died: July 11, 2009
 31 
Emerson Palmieri
(Footballer left-back)
Emerson Palmieri
4
Birthdate: August 3, 1994
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Santos, São Paulo, Brazil
 32 
Giuseppe Rossi
(Footballer Forward)
Giuseppe Rossi
7
Birthdate: February 1, 1987
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Teaneck, New Jersey, United States
 33 
Camila Giorgi
(Tennis player)
Camila Giorgi
4
Birthdate: December 30, 1991
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Macerata, Italy
 34 
Lou Albano
(Professional Wrestler)
Lou Albano
4
Birthdate: July 29, 1933
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Rome, Italy
Died: October 14, 2009
 35 
Giancarlo Fisichella
(Racecar driver)
Giancarlo Fisichella
3
Birthdate: January 14, 1973
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Rome, Italy

Giancarlo Fisichella, also known as Giano, has three Formula One World Championship wins in his kitty. The popular racing driver also captains the Nazionale Piloti football team. Throughout his career, he has raced for teams such as Renault, Force India, and Ferrari. He is related to a Sicilian noble family.

 36 
Danilo Gallinari
(Basketball player)
Danilo Gallinari
6
Birthdate: August 8, 1988
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Sant'Angelo Lodigiano, Italy
 37 
Nico Mannion
(Basketball player)
Nico Mannion
3
Birthdate: March 14, 2001
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Siena, Tuscany, Italy
 38 
Franco Columbu
(Bodybuilder, Powerlifter)
Franco Columbu
1
Birthdate: August 7, 1941
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Ollolai, Italy
Died: August 30, 2019
 39 
Vincenzo Nibali
(Bicycler)
Vincenzo Nibali
3
Birthdate: November 14, 1984
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Messina, Sicily, Italy
 40 
Gianluca Vialli
(Association football player, Journalist, Association football manager)
Gianluca Vialli
5
Birthdate: July 9, 1964
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Cremona

Gianluca Vialli is an Italian former football player who played as a striker. He scored 286 goals in more than 500 appearances and is the  tenth-highest scoring Italian footballer in all competitions. After his retirement, he became manager of the English football club Chelsea and was one of the club's most successful managers.

 41 
Davide Astori
(Association football player)
Davide Astori
7
Birthdate: January 7, 1987
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: San Giovanni Bianco, Italy
Died: March 4, 2018
 42 
Fabio Borini
(Association football player)
Fabio Borini
5
Birthdate: March 29, 1991
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Bentivoglio
 43 
Antonio Di Natale
(Association football player)
Antonio Di Natale
5
Birthdate: October 13, 1977
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Naples
 44 
Andrea Barzagli
(Association football player)
Andrea Barzagli
5
Birthdate: May 8, 1981
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Fiesole
 45 
Paolo Di Canio
(Former footballer Forward)
Paolo Di Canio
6
Birthdate: July 9, 1968
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Rome, Italy
 46 
Alex Zanardi
(Italian Motorsports Racing Driver)
Alex Zanardi
3
Birthdate: October 23, 1966
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Bologna, Italy

One of Italy’s best-known paracyclists and race car drivers, Alex Zanardi has four Paralympic gold medals in his kitty, apart from his 12 World Championship gold medals. Following a 2001 race car accident, he lost both his legs. The former Formula One racer has won CART Championships, too.

 47 
Andrea Bargnani
(Basketball player)
Andrea Bargnani
4
Birthdate: October 26, 1985
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Rome, Italy
 48 
Domenico Berardi
(Association football player)
Domenico Berardi
5
Birthdate: August 1, 1994
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Cariati
 49 
Geno Auriemma
(Basketball coach)
Geno Auriemma
6
Birthdate: March 23, 1954
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Montella, Campania, Italy
 50 
Marco Materazzi
(Footballer)
Marco Materazzi
6
Birthdate: August 19, 1973
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Lecce, Italy