Parma, 28 February 2019 – Carlo Castellani was one of Empoli’s most famous players, previously the Tuscan side’s top scorer until 2012 when he was surpassed by Francesco Tavano. Empoli’s stadium is now dedicated to him, which is where the Crociati will be in action on Saturday afternoon.

Empoli’s ground was inaugurated midway through the 1960s. As we’ve already mentioned, it was named after Carlo Castellani, who played for Empoli for nine seasons (1926 to 1930 and 1934 to 1939). His record includes 61 goals in 145 appearances. Following the start of the Second World War, Castellani was suspected of links to the Resistance and was deported to Germany, locked up in the Mauthausen concentration camp.

Over the years, the stadium, which now has a capacity of around 16,000, has undergone a number of reconstructions. The first was to be adapted to Serie A following their historic promotion in 1986, while the second was for the Azzurri’s European debut in 2007-08. This was in the first round of the UEFA Cup against Zurich, with the hosts winning 2-1. In 2008, a cover was also placed above the Tribuna Maratona.

The Maratona’s lower tier, where the Empoli ultras usually sit, was dedicated to Emiliano Del Rosso in 2008, who passed away prematurely. The historic fan was leader of the “Desaparecidos 1983”, which is one of the groups that has a part in the famous friendship between the fans of Empoli and Parma since 1984.

In 2017, Empoli presented further reconstruction plans to increase the Castellani capacity to 20,000, with the installation a full cover.