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Mirco Antenucci fires SPAL back to Serie A

Former Leeds striker has 19 league goals on the season

SPAL v FC Pro Vercelli - Serie B
Former Leeds striker Mirko Antenucci has helped lead SPAL to a Serie A promotion.
Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images

For the first 24 games of the 2015 season, striker Mirco Antenucci was a stable presence at the front of a solid Leeds United attack.

The Italian had eight goals over those first 24 games in what appeared at the time to be the makings of a solid season for the Whites.

Despite the early success, in the latter half of the season, Antenucci failed to feature, playing in just 15 games and only scoring twice — once again Blackpool and Fulham. Antenucci would end the campaign with 10 goals and two assists in 36 Sky Bet Championship appearances.

Mirco Antenucci may have had a bright future with Leeds before leaving for Italy.
Reuters

In the next season, the striker managed nine goals and five assists before being sent to Serie B side Societa Polisportiva Ars et Labor, or SPAL on a free transfer. That side — thanks in part to Antenucci and his 19 goals and seven assists this season — has earned promotion to Serie A for the first time in 49 years. Last year, the Spallini earned promotion from Lega Pro.

The promotion came despite a 2-1 loss to Ternana, the club Antenucci started with before coming to Leeds. The lone goal for the Spallini came from … you guessed it … Antenucci.

“When I chose Ferrara I had positive feelings that turned out to be successful, a square with such a public and a life Serene after two years of England,” Antenucci told Sky Sports Italy in an interview this weekend.

Antenucci’s agent Silvio Pagliari told Serie B News the decision to move on from Leeds to SPAL was “still well thought out.”

“It’s a solid company with clear projects, so all was well weighted too with my partner Michelangelo Minieri. All went well,” Pagliari said.

Oh, what could have been …