Nicola Rizzoli is active in the Italian Serie A since 2002. In 2007 he received his FIFA badge and in August of that year he started with a CL qualifier. After only a year and a half he took charge of a Champions League group stage match. Rizzoli was promoted to the elite category at the beginning of season 2009-2010.
Just to compare: it took Roberto Rosetti 3 years to get to the Champions League.
Niccola Rizzoli must know a few important people (Collina?): In May 2010 he was awarded the Europa League final.
Rizzoli is selected for EURO 2012
Nicola is active in the 2013 UEFA Champions League.