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How many famous football statisticians have a passion for bluesharks? There’s probably only one answer to that question, and that answer is GIANLUCA CUGINI. This Italian-born football statistician (todaybased in Pescara, Abruzzo) works for the International Federation of Football History&Statistics (IFFHS). His duties include analyzing teams’ strengths and weaknesses, projecting their likelihood of winning championships, and contributing toward the development of new strategies A charismatic man with an impressive resumé, there’s no one quitelike Gianluca. He started his career with football stats very young; hewas only 22 whenheworkedat the FIFA World Cup, in which Azzurri, Italy’s national team, was playing. Initially, he worked for DATASPORT—a company that provides services for sporting events around the world—as a football statistician, starting in 1987. At this job, he calculated stats during the Champions League and also for other World Cups ( not only with the BLUE team )

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In time,heleft Datasport and beganworking the same job at the IFFHS

In 2002, he was assigned to be the head of Italy’s IFFHS division, a position which he held from 2002 until 2012.

From 2012 to 2013, he served as World Executive Board of the IFFHS.

He was the first Italian in the Football History ( IFFHS ).

Nowadays, Gianluca also works as a Marketing consultant (in the football category, of course).

Although Gianluca adores his job, he says it's much more enjoyable because he’s familiar with the sport. In his youth, he competed in young football tournaments. Because he played the sport, he says, he feels that it enhanced his statistician skills

Throughout his career, he has calculated stats for hundreds upon hundreds of games.

In addition to working at the FIFA World Cup, he has also worked at the FIFA World Cup Clubs,the Confederations Cup,UEFA Euro Championship the Champions League, UEFA Supe rcup,Serie A and Italy Cup, Italy Super cup, FIFA World Cup sub 20, Olympic Games …..

In particular, he really enjoyed working for Azzurriat the FIFA World Cup.

To some people, statistics not seem like an interesting job. After all, even if they h've done well in school, most people would not choose math or statistics as a career choice. For Gianluca, however, football statistics is his life’s work. In one interview, he said being a football statistician gives him “great satisfaction ... because it combines my two great passions: football and statistics.”


1 REAL MADRID ( SPAIN )22 2 3 11 - 2 3 1

2 AL AHLY ( EGYPT ) 20 - - 8 4 1 6 1

3 MILAN ( ITALY )18 1 3 7 2 - 5 -

BOCA JUNIORS ( ARGENTINA ) 18 - 3 6 2 1 4 2

5 BARCELLONA ( SPAIN ) 17 3 - 5 4 - 5 -

6 INDEPENDIENTE ( ARGENTINA ) 16 - 2 7 2 1 1 3

7 SAN PAOLO ( BRASIL ) 12 1 2 3 1 1 1 3

8 BAYERN M . ( GERMANY ) 11 1 2 5 1 1 1 -

9 LIVERPOOL ( ENGLAND ) 11 - - 5 - 3 3

JUVENTUS ( ITALY ) 11 - 2 2 1 3 2 1

AJAX ( NEDERLAND ) 10 - 2 4 1 1 2 -

INTERNAZIONALE ( ITALY ) 9 1 2 3 - 3 - -








Thanks to his illustrious career, he has been to 110-plus countries on all seven continents. (He has n't counted how many he’s been to, even though fans have asked him to more than once.) He has n't stopped touring the world, either: he intends to keep on travelling so that he can learn new things.

Throughis travelling, Gianluca has discovered new hobbies. One of these hobbies was statistics on bluesharks. That's right: Gianluca doesn't just calculate statistics for football games, but he also researches statistics on these blue sharks. These fascinating creatures(Prionaceglauca)—which are located in temperate and tropical climates—are greatly threatened by human fishing. Their skin is used for leather, and their fins for shark-fin soup. In fact, people fish them so much that the International Union for Conservation of Nature has deemed them as having a Near Threatened status.

Gianluca has been passionate about sharks for a long time. The reason for this is that, as a child, he and a friend who owned a boat would often see bluesharks when they went out to sea. When Gianluca saw them for the first time, he says, it was love at first sight. The sharks actually used to be quite common in the Adriatic Sea (which borders his home country of Italy), but unfortunately this is no longer the case, due to fishing. Moreover, his interest in them further solidified when he saw Sharks and men (Uomini e squali), a documentary by Bruno Vailati.

Gianluca further developed his interest in bluesharks when he met Dr. Alessandro De Maddalena, one of the world’s most well-known shark experts. Dr. De Maddalena agreed to publish a work by

Gianluca, for which he is thankful. “I think he is really amazing,” Gianluca says of his favorite marine biologist. He adds that, as a child, he was saddened by the fact that he could never find many books about sharks. He did find one such book, however—-The Shark: Splendid Savage of the Sea, by Jacques-Yves Cousteau—which he still holds fondly in his heart today.




BLUE SHARK 3.80 m ( * valued NICE / FRANCE / 1899 ) ( 2015 DE MADDALENA / BANSCH / MALIET)


BLUE SHARK 3.70 m ( * valued ) ( PESCARA, ITALY 2002 ) – ( 2003 CUGINI / DE MADDALENA )



BLUE SHARK 3.20 m ( TARANTO, ITALY 2008 ) – ( 2008 CUGINI )


BLUE SHARK 2.80 – 3.00 m ( PESCARA, ITALY 2000 ) – ( 2003 CUGINI / DE MADDALENA )

BLUE SHARK 2.70 – 2.90 m ( SILVI , ITALY 1999 ) – ( 2003 CUGINI / DE MADDALENA )

BLUE SHARK 2.60 -2.80 m ( GIULIANOVA , ITALY 2002 ) - ( 2003 CUGINI – DE MADDALENA )

BLUE SHARK 2.80 m ( PESCARA , ITALY 1987 ) - ( 1987 CUGINI )

BLUE SHARK 2.80 m ( CROTONE, ITALY 2016 ) - ( 2016 CUGINI )

For additional catches of interest please contact :

Gianluca is grateful that, through his career as a football statistician, he was able to develop his interest in this magnificent animal. And as to why he especially loves bluesharks in particular, he explains that he is a great fan of Azzurri, who wear bright blue outfits.

At the end of the day, Gianluca is not only great at his job, but he's also a world traveler with a lot of stories to tell. His passion for bluesharks encourages his fans everywhere to learn more about animal conservation and the environment—and, by extension, about the steps they can take to improve our natural world.

Craggy mountains to pleasing hills and with alluring coast, Italy, where football is the most popular sport, and the players with bright blue jersey like their country's bright blue sky, has an epitome of talent, a person with positive aspect of life, an excursionist, a Football lover, a passionate person with interesting hobbies and impressive personality, Gianluca Cugini. He is unbeatable master of national and international, a celebrated football statistician who surly knows his act very well. He worked for DATASPORT in Milan and International Federation Football History & Statistics (IFFHS) because of his erudite art of stats and mastered skills.

Being a traveler with great love for travel, Gianluca Cugini has been blessed with good luck, which not many own. He stepped into more than 110 countries and with keen observing ability he has developed many hobbies, one of which absorbed most of his attention, is statistics on deep water monsters the Blue sharks.

For him, stats is the source of enjoyment and delight. It is more a passion than profession.

"I have great passion for football and stats" adding to this he says, " Important thing to become a skillful football statistician is to have passion and understanding of both and it's even better if you played football. I did overall young football tournaments"

He started football statistics at a very young age. When he was 22 he showed his magical skills in the World Cup with the "Azzurri"

A sports person loves playing with challenges and Gianluca Cugini has a similar trait. He has conducted hundreds and hundreds of games and contributed his part which is strongly marked. FIFA World Cup, FIFA World Cup Clubs, Champions League, Confederation Cup, EURO Championship, National Team, Italy – Series A, Italy Cup, Super Cup are to name a few, but Gianluca Cugini was gratified with FIFA World Cup with “Azzurri”, FIFA World Cup clubs and the UEFA Champions League.

From the year 2002 he is the person in charge for the IFFHS (International Federation of Football History & Statistic) for Italy


Interestingly, aside from football, he has equal passion for statistics on sharks, the blue sharks in particular. Blue sharks has been his childhood favorite. The love for blue sharks grew when he saw the documentary “Men and sharks” of Bruno Vailati, which marked a great impression on Gianluca Cugini at that span of time. Blue shark's love made Cugini sail the Seas. On pleasant days when Gianluca Cugini was a kid, he used to sail with his friend, in his friend's boat in the Adriatc Sea, where the beautiful blue sharks were plentiful. Excessive admiration and devotion to the ravishing blue sharks made Gianluca Cugini meet with one of the world greatest and renowned sharks experts: Dr. Alessandro de Maddalena, whom Cugini belive to have written at least 20 books on sharks. Dr. Alessandro de Maddalena published Cugini's work on blue sharks. In his childhood Gianluca Cugini couldn't find a book about sharks in his city except for The Shark, Splendid Savage of the Sea of Jacques-Yves Cousteau. Reading and learning about sharks gives him great satisfaction.



When Gianluca Cugini was asked why he loves Blue Sharks specifically?, He responded, "For a football statistician who love “Azzurri” (Blue Shirts) I cannot stop myself to love the blue sharks" in addition to that he said; His love and passion for blue sharks ages back to his childhood. He fell in love with the blue sharks at first sight.

When it came to the topic about traveling, Gianluca Cugini thanks football for taking him to hundreds of countries. He has traveled to all of the seven continents. Gianluca Cugini says, "I have traveled a lot. I think I have traveled more than 110 countries in all continents. One day I will have to do the exact count of the countries I traveled because many people ask me for this". It's traveling which established many new hobbies for Cugini. He is fond of traveling and wants to travel more to learn more of the new things.

A lot can be learned from a radiant personality like Gianluca Cugini from football to blue sharks to the whole of the world. He has ability to inspire people with his work.

Today our guest is Gianluca Cugini who's career takes place mainly in soccer where he worked for DATASPORT of Milan as football statistician and then International Federation Football History & Statistics (IFFHS). He was also lucky enough to travel a lot (more the 110 countries) and grow him other great hobby: statistics on sharks especially blue sharks. We have conducted an interview with him.

What are the key strengths necessary to be a football statistician?

Great passion for football and stats (better if you played football to understand both the statistics and football technical. I did overall Young football tournaments )

What is it like to be a Football Statistician?

Great satisfaction because it combines my two great passions Football and Statistics. I started very early and at age 22 I was already in the World Cup with the “Azzurri” !

What challenges you in your work in your current position?

In my career I did the statistician of football at all levels. Hundreds and hundreds of games: FIFA WORLD CUP, FIFA WORLD CUP clubs, Champions League, NATIONAL TEAM, ITALY – Serie A, ITALY CUP. But the greatest satisfaction were: FIFA WORLD CUP with “AZZURRI”, FIFA World Cup clubs and the UEFA Champions League. Then from 2002 I am the main responsible for the IFFHS (International Federation of Football History & Statistic) for Italy.

How did you start with your hobby statistics on sharks?

The passion for sharks became very strong especially after I saw the documentary "Men and sharks" of Bruno Vailati, a work of great impact, especially for those times. When I was a kid I had a friend who

had a boat and I always carried with him, and when I saw them (blue sharks) it was love at first sight. Once in the Adriatic Sea were very common.

Then another key moment was the meeting with one of the world greatest sharks experts: Dr. Alessandro de Maddalena that began to publish my work. I believe him to have written at least 20 books on sharks! I think that is really amazing and is still very young! If I think that when I was “child” I could never find a book about sharks in my city! Except for The Shark, Splendid Savage of the Sea of Jacques-Yves Cousteau This is also a satisfaction.

Why did you choose blue sharks in particular?

For a football statistician who love “AZZURRI” (BLUE) I could not to love the blue sharks ! Seriously since childhood I have a great passion for sharks and my favorite has always been the blue shark.

Is travel an important 'criteria' so as to persue this hobby?

Thanks to football I have traveled a lot I think I was in more than 110 countries in all continents. One day I have to do the exact count many persons ask me for this!

And thanks to it I was able to cultivate the beautiful hobby of the study of sharks And for AZZURRA / BLUE and laughs heartily.

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