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Annunziata Dell'Olio, (born 23 August 1961) (some sources suggest 1960, Dell'Olio claims 1964 in her autobiography, and during an interview with Piers Morgan in the 2008 BBC TV programme "The Dark Side Of Fame", she claimed 1963) better known as Nancy Dell’Olio, is an Italian-American property lawyer who attained fame as the girlfriend of England football (soccer) manager Sven-Göran Eriksson. She was spoofed regularly by Ronni Ancona in the comedy sketch show Alistair McGowan's Big Impression.

Contents

Biography

Dell'Olio was born in New York, where her mother Antonia was born and her immigrant father ran a series of delicatessens. The eldest of four children, at the age of five her family moved back to Italy, to the hard-up town of Bisceglie in the Province of Barletta-Andria-Trani.

The Dell'Olios had little money and lived in an apartment above a clothes shop. Nunzia, as she was then known, began to experiment with different styles. A former classmate said "I think she felt suffocated by the provincial standards here. She was a girl who desperately needed to be something just a little bit more."[1]

Career

Aged 18, she studied law at Sapienza University of Rome. At the age of 21, Dell'Olio was hit by a car and spent several weeks in hospital. On graduation she was sent to study at New York University (NYU) by the Rome based legal company she worked for.

On her return to Italy in 1990, she met and married 50-year-old successful lawyer Giancarlo Mazza, and set up her own legal practice specialising in high-end property deals. Mazza bought her a Benetti yacht Nancy1.

Sven-Göran Eriksson

An investor in S.S. Lazio, in May 1998 Mazza introduced her to his friend Sven-Goran Eriksson, the manager of Lazio football team. They began an affair six months later after a lunch. After a further six months, Eriksson was disappointed at Dell'Olio not telling her husband, and so approached Mazza to tell him about the affair.

In 2001, Eriksson was offered £4 million a year to manage the England team, so he and Dell'Olio relocated to Regents Park, London.

In early 2002, Eriksson had a short-lived affair with British-based Swedish television presenter Ulrika Jonsson, which was revealed by the Piers Morgan edited Daily Mirror. The event caused a tabloid frenzy as this was the year of the 2002 World Cup, but Eriksson returned to Dell'Olio. At a pre-World Cup Downing Street reception hosted by UK Prime Minister Tony Blair, Dell'Olio turned up in a defiant red trouser suit, which dominated the following days tabloid newspapers. Jonsson subsequently suggested in her autobiography that Dell'Olio had a hold on Eriksson through knowledge of a secret, which is why he returned to Dell'Olio.

In August 2004, it was revealed that Eriksson and his boss Mark Palios had both had affairs with FA secretary Faria Alam. The Mail on Sunday and News of the World published interviews with Alam where she was questioned about sex with Eriksson and Palios in "graphic detail", and also mentioned a relationship with Indian actor Salman Khan (which he firmly denied). Alam was paid £200,000 for each interview.[2] Dell'Olio was upset, and subsequently slapped Eriksson after the tabloid revelations, but chose to stay with Eriksson.

The couple eventually split in August 2007, after Eriksson had taken the job with Manchester City F.C..

It had been rumoured in January 2009 that Dell'Olio had been approached by Channel 4 to appear in Celebrity Big Brother 2009 alongside Ulrika Jonsson with whom Eriksson had a sexual relationship with despite still being together with Dell'Olio.

Recent projects

In 2005, Dell'Olio was the host of Footballers' Cribs on MTV. In this programme she gives viewers a guided tour around the luxury homes of premiership football players. "Nancy is a dream signing for us," said series executive producer Sean Murphy. "She's the first lady of football, so is in the perfect position to give us a real insider's view."[3]

She had an autobiography published in June 2007, entitled My Beautiful Game:[4]

It's all about me,' Nancy Dell'Olio gushed, with no hint of irony, to reporters at the launch party for her wonderfully, unintentionally comic autobiography: 'It's about New York, Italy, my life, my beautiful life.

Nancy also appeared in the 2008 version of the popular Sky One programme, Project Catwalk. She challenged the designers to create a dress that would get her on the best dressed list. In December 2008 she was invited to discuss her new range of lingerie on the highbrow BBC news analysis programme Newsnight, but her account of the underlying philosophy prompted interviewer Jeremy Paxman to state: "I have no idea what you are talking about". [2].

Charity works

Dell'Olio has visited British Red Cross projects in both the UK and overseas. She takes a keen interest in projects that work with vulnerable young people. She is quoted as saying "I have always been a great admirer of the principles and values behind the work of the Red Cross. The thing that really impressed me is that the Red Cross seems to go everywhere, more than any other charity."[5] In May 2006, Dell'Olio urged people to dress in red for Red Cross week in order to raise money for those in need.

Dell’Olio is the chairwoman of Truce International, the British based charity she founded with Eriksson which aims to use football as a means of uniting people in areas affected by war. She has visited Israel numerous times to promote football as a force for peace.

Nancy is an honorary member of the Accademia Apulia.

References

External links








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