As Fiorentina approach the biggest game of their season, the one that will determine whether or not the team plays in Serie A or Serie B next year, the feeling around the club is very uneasy. The atrocious form and desperate position in the table can be attributed to myriad bad decisions, and there’s enough blame for everyone to deserve a significant portion. The fans, however, are doing their part to buoy the team up for this most important of matches: they’ve pledged to suspend their protests against ownership and management for just this week in favor of backing the team to the hilt.
In the statement from its website, the Associazione Centro Coordinamento Viola Club said in part (I’ve translated it),
“We invite all fans to come to the stadium on Sunday, 26 May, for Fiorentina-Genoa. It is time to suspend these things and actively give our full support to Fiorentina. For this reason, the Viola Club banners will be in their places on the balustrades of the Stadio Artemio Franchi, which we hope will be full in every section and area. No Fiorentina fan will miss this chance to support our colors...
“The fans have never failed to support Fiorentina even in the most difficult situations. We appeal to those who take the field: it must be honored and sweated in for the last breath useful to salvation. The fans certainly don’t deserve to be put in this situation and to have witnessed a total sporting failure over the past three years.”
The ACVVC is a confederacy of ultras groups that helps coordinate a lot of the big actions among the denizens of the Curva Fiesole and also provides material support, such as regulating the hanging of banners from the balustrade. It’s generally a pretty levelheaded organization, but the restraint shown here is very impressive, as this season has basically been designed in a government laboratory to infuriate Fiorentina fans.
Expect, therefore, to see a packed Franchi on Sunday, and expect to hear the support in a big way. Up to 600 Genoa fans are expected to cheer for their team; if they’re audible at all in the arena, it’ll be a surprising defeat for their Viola counterparts. With the tifosi dialed in and Vincenzo Montella suspended, it’s now entirely up to the players themselves.