Matteo Salvini radically changed his party’s path, and transformed the Northern League into the Matteo Salvini League.
In 2008, he was elected to the Italian Parliament, which he abandoned the following year to return to the European Parliament. In 2012, he became secretary of the Lombard League, the main regionalist league in the Northern League. In 2013, he was elected to the Italian Parliament but gave up his position to remain in Strasbourg. At the end of that year, he was elected against Umberto Bossi, secretary of the Northern League. The party was undergoing a huge crisis at the time. It had barely won 4% of the votes in the political elections (against twice as many in 2008). Umberto Bossi was weakened by his illness and by various scandals also affecting other representatives of the party leadership.