Happy Birthday to Roberto Bettega who is 69 today!The iconic Italy and Juventus forward made 42 international appearances and scored 19 Azzurri goals
Friday, December 27, 2019
Roberto Bettega was born on 27 December 1950 in Turin. His career is most closely linked to Juventus where he came through the academy before making 481 appearances and scoring 178 goals over 13 seasons. He’s fifth in Juventus’ all-time appearance chart, behind only Del Piero, Buffon, Scirea and Furino and he’s third in the goalscoring table behind only Del Piero and Boniperti. Between 1970 and 1983, he won the Scudetto seven times along with two Coppa Italia titles in the 1878-79 and 1982-83 seasons. In Europe, he was in the side that won the 1976-77 UEFA Cup. Juventus won 1-0 in the first leg against Athletic before losing 2-1 in Bilbao but Bettega’s away goal was enough to secure the cup for the Bianconeri. In the 1979-80 season, he finished as the top scorer in Serie A with 16 goals but it wasn’t enough to win the title as Juve finished behind Inter. For Italy, he made his debut on 5 June 1975 in a 0-1 way win over Finland in Helsinki in a qualifier for the 1976 European Championship. A year later on 5 June 1976, he scored his first Azzurri goals in Milan as he hit a brace in a 4-2 win over Romania. On 15 October 1977, he scored four during a 6-1 win over Finland in Turin. Only five other Italy players have hit as many in a single game and they were Carlo Biagi, Alberto Orlando, Francesco Pernigo, Gigi Riva and Omar Sivori. Bettega went to the 1978 World Cup where Italy finished fourth and he scored two at the tournament, including one against the eventual winners Argentina. Two years later, he featured at the European Championship in Italy where the Azzurri finished fourth. After missing the World Cup win of 1982 due to injury, his international career came to an end on 16 April 1983 in a 1-0 defeat away to Romania in Bucharest during qualification for the 1983 European Championship. Overall, he featured 42 times for Italy and scored 19 International goals.