Pierino Prati

Pierino Prati (Italian pronunciation: [pjeˈriːno ˈpraːti]; 13 December 1946 – 22 June 2020) was an Italian footballer who played mainly as a forward. He began his career with Salernitana, and later played for several other Italian clubs, including a successful spell with Milan, with whom he won several titles. He also had a brief spell with Rochester Lancers in the NASL in 1979.[1][2]

Pierino Prati
Europacup II finale 1968 - Pierino Prati.jpg
Prati with Milan in 1968
Personal information
Date of birth (1946-12-13)13 December 1946
Place of birth Cinisello Balsamo, Italy
Date of death 22 June 2020(2020-06-22) (aged 73)
Place of death Como, Italy
Height 1.81 m (5 ft 11 in)
Playing position(s) Striker
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1965–1966 Salernitana 19 (10)
1966–1973 Milan 143 (72)
1966–1967Savona (loan) 29 (15)
1973–1977 Roma 82 (28)
1977–1978 Fiorentina 8 (0)
1978–1979 Savona 25 (10)
1979 Rochester Lancers 6 (3)
1979–1981 Savona 54 (24)
Total 366 (162)
National team
1968–1974 Italy 14 (7)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 26 May 2015

At international level, Prati represented Italy on 14 occasions between 1968 and 1974, scoring seven goals; he was a member of the teams that won UEFA Euro 1968 on home soil, and which reached the 1970 FIFA World Cup Final.

Club careerEdit

Also known as "Pierino the pest",[2] Prati began his career playing in Serie C1 with Salernitana, winning the title and promotion to Serie B during the 1965–66 season. He is mostly remembered for his highly successful and prolific stint with Italian club A.C. Milan under manager Nereo Rocco in the 60s and 70s, during which he achieved great international and domestic success, winning a Serie A title, a European Cup, two Cup Winners' Cups, an Intercontinental Cup, and two Coppa Italia titles, forming an excellent partnership with Gianni Rivera.[2]

 
Gianni Rivera and Prati with A.C. Milan in the 1968–69 season

He made his Serie A debut with the club during the end of the 1965–66 season, on 18 September 1966, in a 2–1 win over Venezia, but was briefly loaned to Serie B club Savona during the 1966–67 season. He later helped Milan to win the 1967–68 Serie A title, finishing the season as the top goalscorer in the Italian league, with 15 goals. He was also notably part of their European Cup victory in 1969, scoring a hat-trick in the 4–1 defeat of Ajax in the final, and six goals in total throughout the competition. He is the last man to have scored a hat-trick in the Champions League/European Cup Final. Ferenc Puskás (twice) and Alfredo Di Stefano (both of Real Madrid) are the only other players to have achieved this.[3]

Overall, he played for 12 seasons (233 games, 100 goals) in the Italian Serie A with A.C. Milan, A.S. Roma and ACF Fiorentina.[2] He also played for Savona once again in Serie C2 in his later career, as well as the Rochester Lancers in the NASL.[2]

International careerEdit

Prati also played for the Italy national football team. He was most notably a member of the Italian side that won the 1968 UEFA European Football Championship on home soil, during which he made his debut on 6 April, scoring a goal in a 3–2 loss against Bulgaria in the first leg of the quarter-finals, and another in the 2–0 victory in the return leg. He played the first final match alongside Pietro Anastasi, but was replaced by Luigi Riva in the re-match, the striker who would often keep him on the bench for Italy. With his national team, Prati also reached the final of the 1970 FIFA World Cup, losing out to Brazil. In total, he was capped 14 times for the national side between 1968 and 1974, scoring 7 times.[2][3][4][5]

Style of playEdit

A talented and opportunistic player, with an eye for goal, Prati was capable of playing anywhere along the front-line, as a striker, supporting forward, and as a winger. At Milan, he was often deployed on the left wing due to his pace, technique, distribution, and was also known for his powerful and accurate shot from both inside and outside the penalty area, as well as his ability in the air.[1][2]

Personal lifeEdit

Prati's son, Cristiano, is also a footballer, who plays in the lower Italian divisions.[2]

DeathEdit

Prati died on 22 June 2020, after being ill for some time.[6]

Career statisticsEdit

ClubEdit

Source[2]

Club Season League Cup Europe Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Salernitana 1965–66 19 10 - - - - 19 10
Milan 1965–66 2 0 - - - - 2 0
Savona (loan) 1966–67 29 15 - - - - 29 15
Milan 1967–68 23 15 7 3 8 4 38 22
1968–69 30 14 3 1 7 6 40 21
1969–70 21 12 3 3 4 2 30 17
1970–71 29 19 10 3 - - 39 22
1971–72 21 6 11 4 7 2 39 12
1972–73 17 6 - - 4 2 21 8
Roma 1973–74 23 8 3 0 - - 26 8
1974–75 29 14 10 8 - - 39 22
1975–76 10 2 3 3 6 0 19 5
1976–77 20 4 2 1 - - 22 5
1977–78 - - 4 1 - - 4 1
Fiorentina 1977–78 8 0 - - - - 8 0
Savona 1978–79 25 10 - - - - 25 10
Rochester 1979 6 3 - - - - 6 3
Savona 1979–80 27 12 - - - - 27 12
1980–81 27 12 - - - - 27 12
Total for Milan 143 72 34 14 30 16 207 102
Career total 366 162 56 27 36 16 458 205

InternationalEdit

Source[4]

Italy national team
Year Apps Goals
1968 4 2
1969 2 0
1970 1 1
1971 4 2
1972 2 2
1973 0 0
1974 1 0
Total 14 7

HonoursEdit

ClubEdit

Salernitana[2]

Milan[1]

InternationalEdit

Italy[2][7]

IndividualEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d e "A.C. Milan Hall of Fame: Pierino Prati". acmilan.com. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "Pierino PRATI (II)" (in Italian). magliarossonera.it. Retrieved 24 December 2014.
  3. ^ a b Pierino PratiFIFA competition record
  4. ^ a b "Nazionale in cifre: Prati, Pierino". www.figc.it (in Italian). FIGC. Retrieved 20 April 2015.
  5. ^ "Racconti Mondiali: Messico 1970 - Pierino Prati" (in Italian). Storie di Calcio. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  6. ^ "RIP: Pierino Prati dead at 73". Football Italia. Tiro Media Ltd. 22 June 2020. Retrieved 23 June 2020.
  7. ^ "Pierino Prati" (in Italian). Eurosport. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  8. ^ Roberto Di Maggio; Igor Kramarsic; Alberto Novello (11 June 2015). "Italy - Serie A Top Scorers". RSSSF. Retrieved 2 December 2015.

External linksEdit