|Organising body||Lega Italiana|
|Number of teams||60|
|Level on pyramid||3|
|Promotion to||Serie B|
|Relegation to||Serie D|
|Domestic cup(s)||Coppa Italia|
|League cup(s)|| Supercoppa di Serie C |
Coppa Italia Serie C
|International cup(s)|| UEFA Europa League |
(via winning Coppa Italia)
|Current champions|| Como (Group A)|
Perugia (Group B)
Ternana (Group C)
|Most championships||Prato (6 titles)|
|TV partners|| Eleven Sports,|
|Current: 2020–21 Serie C|
Serie C (Italian pronunciation: [ˈsɛːrje ˈtʃi] ) is the third-highest division in the Italian football league system after the Serie B and Serie A. The Lega Italiana Calcio Professionistico (Lega Pro) is the governing body that runs the Serie C. The unification of the Lega Pro Prima Divisione and the Lega Pro Seconda Divisione as Lega Pro Divisione Unica (often also abbreviated as Lega Pro) in 2014 reintroduced the format of the original Serie C that existed between 1935 and 1978 (before the split into Serie C1 and Serie C2). On 25 May 2017 the Lega Pro assembly unanimously approved the return to the original name of the competition to Serie C.
A third division above the regional leagues was first created in Italy in 1926, when fascist authorities decided to reform the major championships on a national basis, increasing the number of teams participating by promoting many regional teams from the Third Division (Terza Divisione) to the Second Division (Seconda Divisione).
A new league running this Second Division, the Direttorio Divisioni Inferiori Nord (Northern Directory of Lower Divisions) was set up in Genoa, while football activity in the southern part of the country was run by the Direttorio Divisioni Inferiori Sud which later became the Direttorio Meridionale (Southern Directory). These leagues did not last long; after another reform they were disbanded between 1930 and 1931. Some bigger clubs who owned large pitches with dimensions of 100x60 metres were promoted to the First Division (Prima Divisione); a league defined and structured as the "National Championship".
The Second Division had no relegations to regional leagues as most were reelected at the beginning of each new season. Once a critical threshold was reached the Italian federation decided to close the two leagues and move all teams to the "Direttori Regionali" (Regional Committees) so that the labour-intensive job of organisation was delegated to more efficient and organised regional staff.
The most successful teams coming from the Second Divisions in 5 years (from 1926–27 to 1930–31) composed 6 ever-growing sections of the First Division (Prima Divisione) which at the beginning had just a few teams in just one section from southern Italy.
This championship was organized by the same league governing Serie A and Serie B (the "Direttorio Divisioni Superiori"), even if, as opposed to the two higher divisions, it was structured in local groups with geographical criteria. The number of clubs belonging to the Prima Divisione continued to increase every year, until FIGC decided to rename it Serie C (at the beginning of the 1935–36 season) while a subsequent large reduction in 1948 led to the creation of a sole national division in 1952–53.
The reform that created the actual league was decided by Bruno Zauli in 1959 as he built on the incomplete work started by the former president Ottorino Barassi to make professional football fully recognised and organised. While Lega Calcio had a stated mission of organising professional and national divisions, the new Lega Nazionale Semiprofessionisti based in Florence had to regulate the two semiprofessional and subnational divisions: Serie C and Serie D, with the first one adopting a format of three groups of 20 teams each. In 1978 the semiprofessional sector was abolished; Serie D became an amateur section while Serie C was divided into two professional divisions (Serie C1 and Serie C2), and the league changed its name to Lega Professionisti Serie C. On 20 June 2008, the league was restructured and took its current name Lega Italiana Calcio Professionistico.
After the league reform of 2014, the two previous divisions of Lega Pro Prima Divisione and Lega Pro Seconda Divisione were ultimately merged into a new league; the Lega Pro Divisione Unica or more informally addressed as just Lega Pro. This is the league structure currently in operation; comprising 60 teams that are divided geographically in three groups of 20 each. At the end of each season, four teams are promoted to Serie B (three group winners, plus one coming from a promotion playoff involving the three group runners-up). Meanwhile, nine teams are relegated to Serie D: the last-placed team from each group go down directly, whereas teams between 16th and 19th from each group place play a relegation playoff (officially referred to as play-out), with the two losing teams from each group also relegated.
In May 2017, the Lega Pro assembly unanimously approved the return to the original name Serie C.The 2017–18 Serie C season includes 19 teams in each of the three divisions after adjustments were made for excluded clubs.
To encourage the development of homegrown players, all Lega Pro clubs were capped to use no more than 16 players in their squads that were older than 23 years of age (in 2019–20 season, player born before 1 January 1997), plus two wildcard for long serving players of the clubs. The clubs could use an unlimited numbers of under-23 players.
8 teams from Lombardy, 6 teams from Tuscany, 4 teams from Piedmont, 1 from Emilia-Romagna and 1 team from Sardinia.
|AlbinoLeffe||Albino and Leffe||Città di Gorgonzola (Gorgonzola)||3,766|
|Giana Erminio||Gorgonzola||Città di Gorgonzola||3,766|
|Grosseto||Grosseto||Olimpico Carlo Zecchini||9,988|
|Juventus U23||Turin||Giuseppe Moccagatta (Alessandria)||5,926|
|Novara||Novara||Silvio Piola (Novara)||17,875|
|Pro Patria||Busto Arsizio||Carlo Speroni||5,000|
|Pro Sesto||Sesto San Giovanni||Breda||4,501|
|Pro Vercelli||Vercelli||Silvio Piola (Vercelli)||5,500|
|Renate||Renate||Città di Meda (Meda)||2,500|
5 teams from Emilia-Romagna, 5 teams from Marche, 3 teams from Veneto, 2 teams from Lombardy, 2 teams from Umbria, 1 team from Friuli-Venezia Giulia, 1 team from Trentino-Alto Adige and 1 team from Tuscany.
|Arezzo||Arezzo||Città di Arezzo||13,128|
|Matelica||Matelica||Helvia Recina (Macerata)||4,315|
|Sambenedettese||San Benedetto del Tronto||Riviera delle Palme||22,000|
|Virtus Verona||Verona||Mario Gavagnin-Sinibaldo Nocini||1,500|
|Vis Pesaro||Pesaro||Tonino Benelli||4,898|
6 teams from Campania, 5 teams from Apulia, 3 teams from Sicily, 2 teams from Calabria, 1 from Abruzzo, 1 team from Basilicata, 1 team from Lazio and 1 from Umbria.
|Cavese||Cava de' Tirreni||Simonetta Lamberti||5,000|
|Juve Stabia||Castellammare di Stabia||Romeo Menti||7,642|
|Monopoli||Monopoli||Vito Simone Veneziani||6,880|
|Trapani||Trapani||Polisportivo Provinciale (Erice)||7,608|
|Turris||Torre del Greco||Amerigo Liguori||3,566|
|Vibonese||Vibo Valentia||Luigi Razza||5,000|
|Virtus Francavilla||Francavilla Fontana||Giovanni Paolo II||2,137|
This is the complete list of the clubs that took part in the 38 Serie C seasons played from the 1935–36 season until the 1977–78 season (participation in the editions of the 1945–46, 1946–47 and 1947–48 seasons, championships that due to World War II, are excluded from the list as they were divided into two completely independent leagues), the three Lega Pro seasons played from the 2014–15 season until the 2016–17 season, and from the 2017–18 season. The teams in bold compete in Serie C in the current season.
For Serie C1 and Lega Pro Prima Divisione winners, see Lega Pro Prima Divisione and for Serie C2 and Lega Pro Seconda Divisione winners, see Lega Pro Seconda Divisione between 1978–79 and 2013–14
Società Sportiva Teramo Calcio is an Italian association football club based in Teramo, Abruzzo. Since the 2014–15 season, the club has played in Serie C, the 3rd tier of Italian football.
Bassano Virtus 55 Soccer Team S.p.A., commonly known as Bassano Virtus or just Bassano is a football club based in Bassano del Grappa, Veneto. The first team of the club was relocated to Vicenza in 2018 as L.R. Vicenza Virtus, while the youth system of Bassano Virtus was retained in Bassano del Grappa along with Vicenza Calcio's was retained in Vicenza.
The 1922–23 Prima Divisione season was won by Genoa.
The Supercoppa di Lega di Seconda Divisione was an Italian football competition played initially by the three group winners of the Lega Pro Seconda Divisione, formerly Serie C2. It was contested from the 2005–06 season until the 2013–14 season with the abolishment of Lega di Seconda Divisione and foundation of Lega Pro.
The 2008–09 Lega Pro Prima Divisione season is the thirty-first since its renaming to Serie C1 in 1978, and the first edition since the renaming from Serie C1 to Lega Pro. It was divided into two phases: the regular season, played from September 2008 to May 2009, and the playoff phase from May to June 2009.
The 1926–27 Prima Divisione was the 1st edition of a second tier tournament of the Italian Football Championship which was organized at national level.
The 2009–10 Lega Pro Seconda Divisione season will be the thirty-second football league season of Italian Lega Pro Seconda Divisione since its establishment in 1978, and the second since the renaming from Serie C to Lega Pro.
The 2010–11 Lega Pro Prima Divisione season was the thirty-third football league season of Italian Lega Pro Prima Divisione since its establishment in 1978, and the third since the renaming from Serie C to Lega Pro.
The 2010–11 Lega Pro Seconda Divisione season was the thirty-third football league season of Italian Lega Pro Seconda Divisione since its establishment in 1978, and the third since the renaming from Serie C to Lega Pro.
The 2011–12 Lega Pro Prima Divisione season will be the thirty-fourth football league season of Italian Lega Pro Prima Divisione since its establishment in 1978, and the fourth since the renaming from Serie C to Lega Pro.
Antonio Gaeta is an Italian footballer who plays for Lega Pro Prima Divisione team Carrarese.
Mavillo Gheller is an Italian footballer.
Football Club Pro Vercelli 1892, commonly referred to as Pro Vercelli, is an Italian football club based in Vercelli, Piedmont. The club is mostly renowned as one of the most successful teams in the early football era of Italy, with seven national titles. They currently play in Serie C, the third tier of Italian football.
Cosenza Calcio S.r.l. is an Italian football club, based in Cosenza, Calabria. Currently the team plays in Serie B, the second tier of Italian football, after earning promotion from Serie C on 16 June 2018 by winning the league playoffs.
The 2013–14 Serie B was the 82nd season since its establishment in 1929. A total of 22 teams contested the league: 15 of which were returning from the 2012–13 season, 4 of which were promoted from Lega Pro Prima Divisione, and three relegated from Serie A.
Rocco "Roberto" Boscaglia is an Italian football coach and former midfielder. He was most recently the head coach of Palermo.
The 2013–14 Prima Divisione season is the thirty-sixth and final football league season of Italian Prima Divisione since its establishment in 1978, and the fifth since the renaming from Serie C to Lega Pro.
The 2014–15 Lega Pro was the first season of the unified Lega Pro division in place of the old Prima Divisione and Seconda Divisione. The league is composed of 60 teams divided into three different groups of 20 each.
The 2015–16 Lega Pro Divisione Unica is the second season of the unified Lega Pro division. The championship name, which is Divisione Unica according to the FIGC regulations, is called Lega Pro in official documents.
Seconda Divisione was the name of the second level of the Italian Football Championship from 1921 to 1926. The competition was initially founded in opposition to the FIGC by the clubs of Northern Italy, which disagreed the old format of the championship, based on plethoric regional groups. In 1921–22, two concurrent championships took place, before FIGC accepted the new format for 1922–23.