Juventus striker Alessandro Del Piero hopes that tonight’s Champions League quarter-final against Liverpool will “close a chapter on a bad memory.”
The two clubs meet tonight for the first time in a competitive match since the 1985 Heysel disaster at which 39 supporters died.
“On that day I was at a friend’s house with my family in order to watch the match,” Del Piero told reporters on Monday.
“When it began to unfold my father sent the children out to play football. He understood from what was happening that it wasn’t going to be a nice spectacle.
“Now with this game I hope it means for everyone we can close the chapter on this bad memory.
“I hope we can play with the right spirit and I hope everyone involved in the occasion displays the true football spirit.
“It will be very difficult to play if we think of the memories as well as the Pope’s recent death.
“It will be less difficult, though, if we concentrate on football after we have thought about the past and present emotions.”
Juventus coach Fabio Capello has warned his players not to be distracted by their emotions this evening.
“We must remember the events of 20 years ago but at the same time we must remember it’s an important competition,” Capello said.
“It is a very sad memory we have but we have the chance to make things better now.”