Football mascots gents. Have you ever thought why some animals were chosen to represent a team? 

Let’s examine Serie A, a league with a wide range of faunae.

In the north of the peninsula Juventus and Udinese have a zebra as their mascot, given their black and white stripes it was an easy call. The other team from Turin, Torino, chose the animal traditionally linked with the Piedmont city: the bull.

In Milan only Inter is connected with an animal (A.C. Milan are the devils) and it’s quite an unusual one. The snake! Precisely a grass snake; the emblem of the city, firstly adopted by the ruling families of Milan in the Middle Ages. 

Car fans might recall the same snake in the Alfa Romeo logo, which of course was founded in Milan too.

Moving towards the east we stop in Verona, where a mastiff is waiting for us. A symbol of strength, loyalty and a homage to an old ruler.

In the capital we have the eternal battle between the eagles (Lazio) and the she-wolf (Roma). The first one was chosen by a former president to evoke power and victory, the latter is the historical emblem of the city of Rome.

The female wolf who saved Romulus and Remus is also the symbol of another team in the south: Lecce.

In Campania, Salernitana chose a seahorse to exalt its maritime connection while Napoli underwent a metamorphosis: from Horse to Donkey.

The original team’s lucky charm was a rampant horse, then after a few disappointing performances in the 1920’s people started saying the horse was more like a tired donkey, similar to the ones used by street hawkers in the city to pull their trolleys.

Once the press started calling the team “o ciuccio” (donkey in the local dialect) it became so popular that it substituted the horse as the team’s mascot. 

(By @365FootballShirts on Instagram)