In the thrilling final of Euro 2020, the England team tasted defeat to Italy. The Azzuri won in an exciting penalty shootout after goalkeeper Gianlugi Donnrumma successfully defended the spot-kick of Bukayo Saka. Giorgio Chiellini played a key role in the game. Even though he was not directly involved in the penalty, he claimed that his contribution was immense in the shootout. Giorgio Chiellini has confirmed that he cursed Saka a few seconds before his penalty was saved by Donnrumma.
Saka had to make a score so that England’s journey in the final shootout of Euro 2020 could remain alive. But his efforts went in vain as he could not make the goal. Footage shows that just before Saka made the kick, Chiellini shouted ‘Kiricocho.’ Carlos Bilardo, the legendary Argentina coach, had invented the word. It is a word that has been used by footballers for many decades for imparting bad luck on the opposite team. This action seemed to have worked in favor of Italy as the team emerged victoriously. Footage that has emerged clearly shows Chiellini screaming the word, just moments before Saka’s futile goal attempt.
An insight into the Kiricocho curse
The avid fans of the football sport are well aware of the Kiricocho curse. During the 1980s, Juan Carlos Kiricocho was a passionate supporter of Estudiantes de la Plata, an Argentinian club. The supporter made sure to attend the training sessions of the club to show his support. However, coach Bilardo noticed that whenever Kiricocho was present during the training sessions, the players would mysteriously sustain injuries.
As per legend, Bilardo asked Kiricocho to attend the training sessions of the oppositions of the Estudiantes club. Bilardo had once remarked that Kiricocho was the lucky mascot of the club as Estudiantes had claimed many victories after he joined their side. Since then, the legend of Kiricocho continues to exist in the entire football world. It is quite common to see many football players use the word on a routine basis to place a curse on their rivals.
The power of the curse can be seen in the title-winning save by Donnrumma in the tense final of Euro 2020. It is quite debatable to say whether the victory of Italy was due to the curse that was placed by Giorgio Chiellini or not. However, the entire match was highly intense, and all the players put in their best efforts in the game.