Lecce

Soccer: Miccoli signs for Lecce after slain-judge slur

Striker who called Falcone 'filth' moves to third-tier team

Soccer: Miccoli signs for Lecce after slain-judge slur

Lecce, July 15 - Former Italy striker Fabrizio Miccoli has joined Lecce, the third-tier side said on Monday. The player was at the centre of controversy last month when wiretaps of a telephone conversation were published in which he described slain anti-mafia judge Giovanni Falcone as "filth". The 34-year-old made a tearful apology in a press conference for the remarks he made in a wiretapped conversation with a Cosa Nostra boss's son. Falcone was assassinated in 1992 along with his wife and three bodyguards in a massive mafia bombing. Falcone's long-time friend and fellow anti-mafia crusader Paolo Borsellino was slain by a car bomb along with five policemen in Palermo 57 days later. Falcone and Borsellino have come to be considered secular saints in Italy for their martyrdom in the battle against organised crime. Former Juventus, Fiorentina and Benfica forward Miccoli joins Lecce as a free agent after his contract with Palermo expired last month. The player, who comes from the Lecce area, had been at the Sicilian club since 2007. Lecce were in Serie A as recently as last year. They were relegated from the top flight at the end of the 2011-12 season and then demoted by another tier after being found guilty of involvement in match-fixing. The southern side reached the third-tier promotion playoffs last season, but failed to get back into Serie B in the final, prompting violence by Lecce fans.

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