'It was scary': AFL star 'spat on' in nasty ordeal in Italy

Chris Young
Sports Reporter
Stephen Coniglio has told an alarming story about escaping from a group of enraged football fans in Italy. (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

GWS Giants captain Stephen Coniglio has told a remarkable tale of being ‘spat on’ by Italian football fans after making a crucial mistake at a massive Serie A match.

The star midfield was pretty succinct when discussing the somewhat alarming incident on the Greats with Garby podcast, offering one crucial piece of advice to listeners.

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“Long story short … when people say don’t wear opposition colours to a game in Italy, make sure you don’t,” Coniglio said.

While wearing team colours to an away game is perfectly acceptable in Australia, football mad Italy is another story entirely.

Lifelong Juventus fan Coniglio could be forgiven for thinking he could get away with the football faux pas, but quickly found out he was in big trouble.

Stephen Coniglio chased by irate football fans

Coniglio said he, Giants teammate Toby Greene and two other friends got more than they bargained for when they attended the match late last year.

The group felt the full force of the passionate Inter Milan fans as they left the stadium.

“We had a couple of drinks, went to the game and I just went, ‘You know what? I don’t care, we’re buying scarfs’ before we went in,” he said.

“As we were walking into the game, I had one (scarf) ripped off my neck and thrown into the crowd. Now we’re down to one scarf.

“Higuain scored a late winner, 2-1, and we quickly ran out, but no taxis would take us as Toby still had the scarf on.

“Before anyone saw us, we slipped the cab driver 20 extra euros or something like that to take us back to the town before anything happened.

““Next minute we’re in the cab and maybe, maybe, maybe, at some point, the scarf went out the window. But the traffic coming out of the game, 80,000 people, you’re at a standstill.

“The poor cab driver had his mirrors taken off and I had spit all over me, because the cab driver was an Inter supporter and wouldn’t put the window up in time.

“We almost had two broken windows to go with it as well. We had to help him out when he eventually got us to the destination. It was a scary, but funny moment.”