Italy Head Coach Roberto Mancini setting a positive tone for the Italian team after qualifying for the Euros and reaching the Final Four of the UEFA Nations League and kicked off the World Cup qualifying for Qatar 2022 with two consecutive wins after defeating Northern Ireland and Bulgaria. Italy will look to extend the 24 games unbeaten(19 wins and five draws), just one behind Marcello Lippi’s Italy side, who went 25 matches without defeat between 2004 and 2006.
Italy is leading Group C in the 1st position with 6 points and a positive goal difference of +4 followed in 2nd place by Switzerland also with 6 points and a positive goal difference of +3.
FIGC reported that the match against Bulgaria, which was broadcast in Italy on Rai 1, was watched by 6,394,000 people and shared by 23.7% of viewers. This morning, the Azzurri got back to training ahead of Wednesday’s game against Lithuania in Vilnius. The starters from yesterday were in the swimming pool and the gym, while the rest of the squad was on the pitch at CSKA Sofia’s training ground.
Monday 29 March
11:30 – Training (behind closed doors)
Photo: via figc.it
As verified by the FIGC, the absolute unbeaten record, meanwhile, belongs to Vittorio Pozzo’s Italy team, who didn’t lose in 30 games between 1935 and 1939. With 67 points taken in various competitions, Mancini is top of the table after 29 games in charge of Italy (Vicini, Sacchi and Pozzo are close behind on 63 points). With 20 wins from 29 games as the Azzurri’s head coach, Mancini has the highest win rate (69%) of any Italy manager, ahead of Pozzo (66% from 95 games) and Sacchi (64% from 53 games). Italy have also gone 20 competitive matches – i.e. excluding friendlies – without tasting a single defeat, the previous record was 17 (1997-1999, under Cesare Maldini and then Dino Zoff).
Mancini’s Italy side score with ease: 66 goals scored by 28 different players – only under Pozzo (53) and Prandelli (29) have the Azzurri had more goalscorers. Andrea Belotti is the most prolific player under Mancini with seven goals. Il Gallo scored his 11th Italy goal, bringing him level with Immobile at the top of the goalscoring charts for current Azzurri. However, there’s a twist. Belotti has scored ten of these eleven goals away from home; only Riva, Piola (both 13) and Meazza (12) have scored more away goals. Italy have let in just 14 goals under Mancini but haven’t conceded in 515 minutes of football – five games. They also haven’t conceded in six consecutive away games: another record toppled, which was previously set between 1972 and 1974 by Valcareggi’s Italy team (five away games without conceding).
— Anna Italia (@ItalianSerieA) March 28, 2021
🇮🇹 👉 Italy Head Coach Roberto Mancini will look to extend the 24 games unbeaten(19 wins and five draws), just one behind Marcello Lippi’s Italy side, who went 25 matches without defeat between 2004 and 2006.https://t.co/1dYXK6pmT4 https://t.co/QhZfmcWnre
— Anna Italia (@ItalianSerieA) March 29, 2021
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👉 Italy Squad list
Goalkeepers: Alessio Cragno (Cagliari), Gianluigi Donnarumma (AC Milan), Alex Meret (Napoli), Salvatore Sirigu (Torino);
Defenders: Francesco Acerbi (Lazio), Alessandro Bastoni (Inter), Cristiano Biraghi (Fiorentina), Leonardo Bonucci (Juventus), Giovanni Di Lorenzo (Napoli), Emerson Palmieri (Chelsea), Gian Marco Ferrari (Sassuolo), Alessandro Florenzi (Paris Saint-Germain), Manuel Lazzari (Lazio), Gianluca Mancini (Roma), Leonardo Spinazzola (Roma), Rafael Toloi (Atalanta);
Midfielders: Nicolò Barella (Inter), Gaetano Castrovilli (Fiorentina), Manuel Locatelli (Sassuolo), Rolando Mandragora (Torino), Lorenzo Pellegrini (Roma), Matteo Pessina (Atalanta), Matteo Ricci (Spezia), Stefano Sensi (Inter), Roberto Soriano (Bologna), Marco Verratti (Paris Saint-Germain);
Forwards: Andrea Belotti (Torino), Federico Bernardeschi (Juventus), Federico Chiesa (Juventus), Stephan El Shaarawy (Roma), Vincenzo Grifo (SC Freiburg), Ciro Immobile (Lazio), Lorenzo Insigne (Napoli).
👉 Italy National Team Schedule
Tuesday 30 March
10:45 – Departure from Sofia to Vilnius
16:30 – Press conference – Lithuania (LFF Stadium, Vilnius)
17:00 – Training – Lithuania (first 15 minutes open to the press) (LFF Stadium, Vilnius)
17:30 – Press conference – ITALY (LFF Stadium, Vilnius)
18:00 – Training – ITALY (first 15 minutes open to the press) (LFF Stadium, Vilnius)
Wednesday 31 March
20:45 – Lithuania vs. ITALY (LFF Stadium, Vilnius). Post-match press conference followed by a return to respective clubs