Tameside Council offer to show Simone Perrotta his Ashton statue
Thursday 21st September 2017 @ 14:53 by Tom Greggan
Ashton News Sports

Tameside Council have offered to show Simone Perrotta his Ashton statue after the former Italian international footballer claimed he hadn’t been told about it.

Perrotta has a statue outside Curzon Ashton’s Tameside Stadium alongside Sir Geoff Hurst and Jimmy Armfield CBE; a trio of World Cup winners who were born in Ashton.

But, in an interview with Italian newspaper Il Giornale to mark his 40th birthday on Sunday, Perrotta said he had been left unaware of the permanent landmark in his birthplace.

“It was my uncle, who still lives there, who told me about it,” he said. “I find it a bit strange nobody else alerted me to the existence of this statue. My kids were surprised standing there in front of the statues of those Arsenal players. And I thought ‘Hey, I’m there too…’”

In 2006, Perrotta became the third player from Ashton to win the World Cup.

But Tameside Council said the made several attempts to alert Perotta to the honour. A Tameside Council spokesman said: “When the World Cup sculpture was unveiled in 2010 we made strenuous efforts to contact Simone Perrotta.

“We e-mailed and wrote to his then club, AS Roma, several times but there was no response. We also spoke to some people who claimed to know Simone and his family, but they proved unable to help.

“Considering the media coverage generated by the Geoff Hurst and Jimmy Armfield visits, it’s surprising no one made Simone aware of the sculpture. However, none of that detracts from the place he holds in Tameside’s sporting history. If Simone Perrotta is ever in Britain we would love to show him the statue.”

Perrotta was born in Ashton in 1977 and lived there for five years, attending St. Ann’s Primary RC School on Burlington Street, before the family moved back to their home town of Cerisano in 1982. A successful career with Reggina, Juventus, Bari, Chievo and Roma reached it’s pinnacle in 2006, when he started all seven of Italy’s games at the World Cup in Germany, including the final, when the Azzuri overcame France on penalties in Berlin.

Perrotta retired from international football in 2010 and ended her career altogether in 2013.