Italy maintained their 100% winning record in Euro 2020 qualifying with a comfortable victory over Greece.
Italy’s team thrashed 3-0 on Saturday in Athens to Greece and, with an authoritarian performance, maintained the full points after the first three days of group J of the qualifying phase to the Eurocup of 2020.
The goals of Nicoló Barella, Lorenzo Insigne and Leonardo Bonucci confirmed the growth of coach Roberto Mancini’s Italy, in another positive step towards the re-foundation of a team that bottomed last year by not qualifying for the World Cup in Russia.
The Italian national team leads Group J with nine points, three more than Finland, second with six, and five more than Greece, which has five and is tied with Bosnia Herzegovina.
The Olympic Spyros Louis, a stadium named in honor of the Greek athlete who won the Marathon at the Athens Games in 1896, hosted the tenth showdown between Greece, the European champion in 2004, and Italy, which won the European Championship in 1968.
The Italian national team, who came after winning 2-0 against Finland and 6-0 against Liechtenstein, continued to bet on quality: Jorge Frello Jorginho, Marco Verratti and Nicoló Barella formed the center of the field, while Lorenzo Insigne and Federico Chiesa accompanied the forward to Andrea Belotti. A tactical bet that gives goals and good benefits to the “azzurri”.
And, despite playing without particularly high rhythms, Italy dominated the game and went into the break ahead 3-0, with the game already widely on track. Mancini’s painting took ten minutes, between 23 and 33 to sink Greece.
An action by the left wing of Belotti, holder one year after the last time, culminated with a flat center to the floor topped by Barella (m.23), while a right hand curved by Insigne, specialty of the Neapolitan, went up 2- 0 to the scoreboard at half an hour.
Italy took advantage of the moment of crisis of the selected Angelos Anastasiadis and, three minutes later, scored the third goal thanks to a header by Bonucci at the center of Emerson Palmieri, recent champion of the Europa League with Maurizio Sarri’s Chelsea.
It relaxed a little Italy after his comfortable advantage and in the resumption made some errors in the phase of exit of ball that Greece, however, did not know how to take advantage. Kostas Fortounis collided with a good save by goalkeeper Salvatore Sirigu (m.66), the starter due to injury by Gianluigi Donnarumma, while Manolis Siopis sent high from an excellent position (m.77).
Also the “azzurri” could increase their advantage, but neither Insigne, who failed a hand in hand in the 75, nor Chiesa, who pardoned in front of the goal to pass Belotti, they achieved it. In addition, the goal Vasilios Barkas was the protagonist with two great stops to Alessandro Florenzi and Barella.
With still some indecisions and lack of concentration, Italy added an authoritarian victory in a complicated field and strengthened its first position on the road to the next European Championship, in which the Italians will host the opening game at the Olympic Stadium in Rome.
Roberto Mancini’s men have not yet conceded goals in this qualifying phase and have scored 11 goals in three games.
Italy will meet next Tuesday June 11 with Bosnia at the Allianz Stadium in Turin, while Greece will be seen as local, that same day, with Armenia.