Having failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup, Italy achieved remarkable recovery by qualifying for Euro 2020 in style, winning 10 of its 10 qualifying rounds and scoring 37 goals as it comfortably overtook his group.
Finalist defeated in 2012, Italy was drawn with Turkey, Wales and Switzerland in group A. Here, 90 minutes assess their main strengths and weaknesses and predict how far they will go to the World Championships. ‘Europe this summer. Sports enthusiasts from around the world can purchase Italy vs Switzerland Tickets online to enjoy its stunning performances.
The Azzurri’s preparation for this summer’s tournament has been relatively fluid, and Roberto Mancini’s team have been undefeated in their last 14 games since their defeat against Portugal in the Nations League in September 2018.
It’s one of the youngest and most exciting Italian teams in years. While in previous tournaments, the old guard had exceeded their reception, it is an Italian team characterized by the fearlessness of youth.
20-year-old Milan goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma could start between the sticks for Azzurri, 22-year-old midfielder Nicolo Barella has been a revelation for Inter this season, and intelligence and composure from 19-year-old Sandro Tonali make him a huge competent study – and maybe more – for Jorginho.
These youngsters are a refreshing change from the experienced heads who have largely disappointed in the international scene since their triumph at the 2006 World Cup.
After averaging 3.7 goals per game in qualifying – although a modest 9-1 counterattack by Armenia – the Italians also have plenty of firepowers. Forward Ciro Immobile has been the top scorer in Serie A from a distance this season, recording score statistics for Messi and Ronaldo, with 23 goals in just 20 appearances.
However, despite his competence in front of the goal, Immobile was not a regular starter for his country, the captain of Turin Andrea Belotti being often favored at the front, demonstrating how the embarrassment of the choice is for Roberto Mancini with offensive options.
Italy is a nation previously stereotyped for being defensive and boring. Mancini maintained defensive solidity, conceding only four times in qualifying, but did so while adding an attacking touch.
The natural disadvantage of a team brimming with youth is lack of experience. This has been the transition within the Italian national team since the country’s last appearance in an international tournament during Euro 2016, that almost two-thirds of the team that reached the quarter-finals in France are no longer international.
This leaves a number of players headed for Euro 2020 for their first international tournament. Could the big stage take over some of the young Italian talents?
Despite its exciting side and numerous offensive options, Italy used to be useless in front of the goal during qualifying. Despite having dominated possession and 25 breathtaking shots in their decisive game against Finland, Roberto Mancini’s team needed a penalty from Jorginho to seal the three points.
Similarly against Armenia at 10, the Italians held 74% of the ball and 17 shots. However, only six of those shots were on target, and it was an 80th-minute goal that finally assured them of the victory.
There were signs that the tides were changing in Italy’s most recent qualifiers against Armenia – a 9-1 volley – and Bosnia and Herzegovina, where the Azzurri found the net from three of their seven penalty kicks.
However, facing the best teams in Europe at Euro 2020, it is unlikely that Italy will be offered as many opportunities to reach the goal, and will have to take advantage of it when it does.
Italy should progress compared to its group and will be the favorite of the group winners. However, Wales is a team that is constantly improving and can cause all kinds of problems when Gareth Bale and Aaron Ramsey are in good shape, and Switzerland is a very good team in its time, which will also be seen as dark horses for getting to the bottom of the tournament.
Despite three difficult group matches, Italy should advance unscathed to the round of 16. Roberto Mancini’s team will be considered a dark horse for the tournament, but this slight status of an outsider could play in their favor, and the Italians are a good bet for the semi-finals.
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