Italy is shaking against Ukraine, but still wins the European Championship ticket
20 de November, 2023
The World Cup in Qatar was missed, but Italy will be there in Germany. In the last group match they held off Ukraine (0-0) and that was enough for second place in group C.
Phew, did you see them thinking? Then anyway. Italy, which has already been forced to sit at home for two consecutive World Cups, may still defend its European title in Germany next year. It didn’t need more than a draw, and it didn’t do anything more when it visited Ukraine. Well, on a visit, officially Ukaïn played at home, but due to the war the match took place in Leverkusen, where a large crowd of Italian fans also made themselves heard.
The all-or-nothing duel started at a scorching pace and would not stop before half time. Initially, the otherwise defensively strong Italy seemed to panic at the back. Acerbi started to fumble, Buongiorno got yellow early. Ukraine had its options through Tsygankov and Sudakov, who forced Donnarumma to throw herself flat against the canvas.
Yet it was Italy that should have been ahead at half-time. La Squadra Azzurra threatened mainly on corners, but Di Lorenzo headed wide and Chiesa aimed a rehearsed variation over the goal. Barella also scored his second run, but it was mainly Frattesi who should have scored. Fantastically sent away by Chiesa, the Inter midfielder shot at goalkeeper Trubin’s leg. A few seconds later, Chiesa pushed through again, but his cross turned out to be just too hard for the approaching Raspadori.
Ukraine does not get a penalty
National coach Spalletti left the latter in the dressing room and brought in Atalanta striker Scamacca. The pace dropped and Italy seemed to lose some control, without Ukraine suddenly creating a truckload of opportunities. Until a throw-in on which the Italian defense was asleep, including Donnarumma. Chelsea striker Mudryk still encountered the PSG goalkeeper.
Despite trembling and nervousness, Italy reached the final whistle without too much difficulty, although there was a questionable penalty phase in extra time, when Mudryk went over Cristante’s leg. But neither the Spanish ref Jesus Gil nor the VAR saw any problem in it.
Italy ends its group with as many points as Ukraine, but won the other mutual match in Milan two months ago. Ukraine – with Yaremchuk and Sydorchuk (Westerlo) on the bench for the entire match – can still try to qualify through the playoffs.