Today, we are excited to start a new feature here at ViolaNation, Fiorentina Player Spotlight. With this new feature we hope to give our readers new access to our favorite players, learning more about them as a person on and off the field. Each feature will have links to the player’s social media accounts to help you continue following them. So give it a try. Click on the links below and follow Alia Guagni!
Giancarlo Antognoni has always exemplified what it means to be Viola; through his words, his actions and his calming, steadfast leadership at Fiorentina. What he has meant to the fans extends far beyond the pitch, he is a legend living among them in the city he has brought so much joy to.
Fiorentina has lacked that pillar in recent squads. Potential bandiere like Riccardo Montolivo and Federico Bernardeschi have all come and gone. Even current fan-favorite Federico Chiesa may still see a career path outside of Firenze in a striped jersey instead of our beautiful monocolored viola.
Today we are honored with the presence of none other than modern day Fiorentina icon Alia Guagni. Fiorentina fans and club owner have already crowned Alia Guagni as bandiera. She is strong, resilient, fierce, determined, compassionate and loyal. She cares about her teammates, her fans and HER city. When Alia turned down a contract offer from European giants Real Madrid over the summer in favor of resigning with her home team, Rocco Commisso was quoted in local media as saying, “You moved me with your words about weaving together Fiorentina and Firenze.” In Part 3 of our interview with Rocco Commisso coming next week, he will go even deeper into what Alia’s decision has meant to him personally, the club and the city of Firenze.
Today though, it’s all about Alia.
ViolaNation: Lets get things started by getting to know you a little bit. Who Alia is when she isn’t wearing a purple jersey...
Alia Guagni: Sounds good.
VN: Other than being one of the best footballers in Italy, do you have any secret talents?
AG: I cook the best “parmigiana di melanzane” in the world, it’s my mum’s recipe
VN: What is your favorite movie and/or book?
AG: My favorite movie is Armageddon and my favorite book is Figli del Nilo.
VN: Favorite musician or band?
AG: Laura Pausini
VN: Best gelato in Firenze?
VN: If you weren’t playing football, what would you be doing now?
AG: I would be a teacher, but I hope to remain in Fiorentina!
VN: Favorite place to visit in Firenze?
AG: Piazzale Michelangelo
VN: Knowing many girls and boys look up to you, what advice would you like to give them?
AG: Always follow your dreams and enjoy every moment!
VN: Who was your childhood hero and why?
AG: Wonder Woman, because she can fly!
VN: Tell us a little bit about Alia growing up. How did you first get in soccer?
AG: I lived all my life in Florence. I was a quiet girl. My cousin, who is like a brother, played on a youth team near my home and he was always happy with the ball. I followed him everywhere, so I wanted to try soccer too. I fell in love with the sport in that moment.
VN: You played for a little in Seattle, Washington with Antonio Cincotta. What was your time in the United States like?
AG: My experience in Seattle is one of the most important in my life. In the United States the life of a female soccer player is completely different. I was living with a host family that I love. I met a lot of amazing friends and it allowed me to try a different style of playing.
VN: What one moment sticks out for you in your club career?
AG: My career with Fiorentina is very important in my life. When I was a young child I would go to the Franchi Stadium to watch the men’s team play. The best memory that I have with the purple jersey is when we won the Italian Supercoppa on that field! [Stadio Alberto Picco in La Spezia against Juventus]
VN: What one moment sticks out for you in your national career?
AG: Absolutely the best moment in my career with the national team is the World Cup in France, 2019. It was an incredible experience that I will never forgot as long as I live.
VN: You famously turned down Real Madrid in favor of a renewal with Fiorentina. Can you tell us what went in to that decision?
AG: For me the decision to say NO to Real Madrid was “easy” because I love my town, it’s my home, and I love my team, Fiorentina, they are my family. I believe that we can do a lot of great things here.
VN: Last year you were named “Footballer of the Year” for the second time. What does that recognition mean to you?
AG: For me is a great honor to be named “Player of the Year” twice. It’s an award that I dedicate to my team, who works hard with me everyday to make us all better.
VN: You were recently honored with Rocco Commisso in Italy. He joined your team for breakfast and practice. What has his presence meant for the Fiorentina Women?
AG: Rocco arrived in Florence only a few months ago, but from the first day we could feel his positive vibes. He met us and showed us that he believes in the women’s team too. He called me the first night after my decision to stay with Fiorentina to tell me that he was proud of me and how my decision made him extremely happy. I was surprised about that but it was a incredibly positive sign that something was changing. We can do something great together!
VN: Rocco has called you “bandiera” in a time where it doesn’t exist. What does that mean to you?
AG: Rocco and the people in Florence call me “bandiera” which is an incredible honor. I’m where I have to be and where I want stay, with my people, my town and my family! I will always do my best to honor the jersey that I’m wearing. It’s my second skin!
Alia Guagni social media:
We cannot thank Alia enough for taking the time to speak with us and sharing her story with the fans. Please tune in to support Alia and the Fiorentina Women as they play tomorrow at 3:00pm CET/9:00am EST against Sassuolo. You can watch them on Facebook, Twitter and ViolaChannel.tv.
Fiorentina Player Spotlight will continue in a couple of weeks with Primavera star, Christian Koffi.
Forza ragazze! Forza Viola!