It is 50 years to the day that Carlisle United stunned AS Roma with a 3-2 victory in the Anglo-Italian Cup.

The famous victory in the Stadio Olimpico was a major shock for the Italian club.

Now, to mark the half-century anniversary, some of the Roma players have spoken about the game against the Blues and the Anglo-Italian Cup, for a special edition of Hit the Bar!, United’s London Branch supporters’ fanzine.

We reproduce some of their comments here with the branch’s kind permission, via interviews conducted by Gabriele D’Urbano, curator of the AS Roma archive.

Defender Elvio Salviori, who had two spells with Roma, is now 77 – and remembers how Carlisle inflicted the shock result on the home side.

“It was an unexpected defeat, also because with 15 minutes remaining we were winning,” he said.

“They gave us a good lesson, because we understood that we could never be distracted.”

Striker Gianfranco Zigoni, also now 77, similarly recalls the sharp shock Carlisle gave Roma.

“Jokingly, I could tell you that we lost because I was substituted!” he said.

“Joking aside, against the English teams you could never get distracted, because otherwise they would punish you.

“And so, also Carlisle United, which we did not consider the most dangerous team, could have beaten you.”

Alberto Ginulfi was the goalkeeper who had the misfortune of picking the ball out of his net three times against the Cumbrians – twice.

After United’s 3-2 win in Rome, the return game saw a 3-3 draw at Brunton Park.

News and Star: The teams line up at Brunton ParkThe teams line up at Brunton Park

The 80-year-old, who played for 13 years with Roma, said: “We were winning, but then we got caught in the second half.

“Maybe we made the mistake of underestimating our opponent.

“We didn’t do it in the second [game] but we couldn’t win there either and it ended 3-3”.

Ginulfi remembers the maverick Stan Bowles – who performed kick-ups on the halfway line in Rome to the annoyance of home players – as one of United’s stars.

He also recalled the critical reception his team received after their defeat.

“In the end there were some whistles,” he said. “Only Valerio Spadoni and Giorgio Morini, who were on their debut, were applauded.

“But our audience never abandoned us and on the occasion of the final against Blackpool they filled the stadium on a hot day and gave us a big push towards victory.”

Ginulfi also shared his memories of the return game at Brunton Park.

“It was always nice to go to play in the English stadiums,” he said.

“I remember that in a match we were greeted by a parade of bagpipes.

“Playing with the audience attached to the pitch was nice, even if I must say that I was always very cold and concentrated.

“For me they could have been a hundred thousand or ten people there and it didn’t change anything – I was just thinking about what was happening on the pitch.”

Elvio Salvori also recalled Brunton Park. “They had a good pitch,” he said of Carlisle, “small but with the stands attached to the pitch, and the public gave them an extra boost.”

Gianfranco Zigoni added: “It was a draw, even if I didn’t play. I was sorry, because playing in England was always great.

News and Star: Our report of United's win in Rome, by Ross BrewsterOur report of United's win in Rome, by Ross Brewster

“There was a great atmosphere, with the players coming to the stadium on mopeds, perhaps together with the fans.

“But on the pitch if you weren’t focused you could [concede] three or four goals in a few minutes.”

*Adapted from Hit the Bar! Anglo-Italian Cup 50th anniversary edition by Carlisle United Supporters Club London Branch. The branch have produced a commemorative t-shirt which benefits the Alzheimer’s Society in tribute to Stan Bowles. It is available in United’s club shop or at the London Branch website HERE, priced £17 + £3 postage and packing. £2 from every shirt sold goes to Alzheimer’s Society in Carlisle. Other profits go to projects to support Carlisle United. Click HERE for more information and to join the London Branch.