Italy Head Coach Roberto Mancini Called Up 27 Players for Greece and Liechtenstein

By Anna Italia
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Italy Head Coach Roberto Mancini called up 27 players for the EURO 2020 Qualifiers Seventh and Eight fixtures.   The good news is that Italy might grab the qualification!  Italy is leading Group J with six wins from six reaching 18 points (a record for Italy).   Mathematically speaking, Italy will  grab the qualification, if they win the game against Greece on Saturday 12th October at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome.  The eighth fixture will be against Liechtenstein in Vaduz on Tuesday 15th October 2019.   The team will meet at the Technical Center of Coverciano on Monday 7 October.

Mancini called up  young Giovanni Di Lorenzo for the matches against Greece and Liechtenstein.   Di Lorenzo born in 1993 is enjoying a good start to the season at Napoli and returns to Coverciano after previously taking part in a training camp in April.

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The atmosphere is sure to stir up memories of the ‘Magic Nights’ at Italia ’90 as Roberto Mancini’s side will play in Rome for the first time in four years following the 2-1 win over Norway that came in October 2015. It will be the 59th match in the capital, making the city the one that has hosted the most Azzurri fixtures, with Milan on 58 after being the venue for Italy vs. Portugal in the Nations League. Overall, Italy have won 34, drawn 17 and lost 7 in the capital, scoring 105 goals and conceding 47. However, this will be the first time that Greece visit Rome to face the Azzurri: the two sides have had ten previous encounters, with Italy winning six and drawing three. Their only loss against the Greeks came 47 years ago in Athens (2-1 in a friendly). The last five fixtures hosted in Italy between the two countries have taken place in Milan, Florence, Turin, Bari and Bologna.

This is not only a vital match for the Azzurri, but will also be an opportunity to help the young patients of the ‘Bambino Gesù’ hospital, as part of the celebrations for the 150th anniversary of the children’s hospital in Rome, a real institute of excellence in the international field of children’s healthcare. After patients, doctors and nurses spent a day with the Azzurri at Coverciano in June, the side will visit the hospital in Gianicolo and split up to visit as many young patients as possible. A delegation of 5,500 from the hospital will then be guests of the FIGC at the Stadio Olimpico for this important qualifier. It will possible to help the hospital by sending a text to 45535. The FIGC has also started an online auction with a variety of exclusive benefits on offer such as VIP experiences and signed shirts to raise money for the cancer department.

The two nations have crossed paths on three previous occasions: twice in 2018 World Cup qualification and once already in the ongoing European Qualifiers. The current record is entirely in Italy’s favour, with three wins and a total of 15 goals to none. The Azzurri’s 6-0 win against this opponent in the last European qualifiers was their most emphatic win for 57 years (the same result coming against Turkey in 1962). The preceding match to that between the two sides ended 4-0 to Italy in Vaduz, with all of the Azzurri’s goals coming in the first half.

👉     Italy Squad – Called Up Players 

Goalkeepers: Gianluigi Donnarumma (Milan), Pierluigi Gollini (Atalanta), Alex Meret (Napoli), Salvatore Sirigu (Torino);

Defenders: Francesco Acerbi (Lazio), Cristiano Biraghi (Inter), Leonardo Bonucci (Juventus), Danilo D’Ambrosio (Inter), Giovanni Di Lorenzo (Napoli), Alessandro Florenzi (Roma), Armando Izzo (Torino), Gianluca Mancini (Roma), Alessio Romagnoli (Milan), Leonardo Spinazzola (Roma);

Midfielders: Nicolò Barella (Inter), Federico Bernardeschi (Juventus), Bryan Cristante (Roma), Frello Filho Jorge Luiz Jorginho (Chelsea), Stefano Sensi (Inter), Marco Verratti (Paris Saint Germain). Nicolò Zaniolo (Roma);

Forwards: Andrea Belotti (Torino), Federico Chiesa (Fiorentina), Stephan El Shaarawy (Shangai Shenhua), Vincenzo Grifo (Friburgo), Ciro Immobile (Lazio), Lorenzo Insigne (Napoli).

Staff – Head Coach: Roberto Mancini; Team Manager: Gabriele Oriali; Assistant Coach: Alberico Evani, Attilio Lombardo, Giulio Nuciari, Fausto Salsano; Fitness Coach: Claudio Donatelli and Andrea Scanavino; Goalkeeping Coach: Massimo Battara; Match Analyst: Antonio Gagliardi and Simone Contran; Doctors: Andrea Ferretti  and Carmine Costabile; Physiotherapists: Maurizio Fagorzi, Emanuele Randelli, Fabrizio Scalzi, Luca Lascialfari, Fabio Sannino; Osteopata: Walter Martinelli; Nutritionist: Matteo Pincella; Secretary: Emiliano Cozzi; Press office director: Paolo Corbi.

👉   Italy National Team schedule (all times CEST)

Monday 7 October
Meet-up at Coverciano by midday
13:45 – Press conference (Roberto Mancini)
17:00 – Training (first 15 minutes open to press)

Tuesday 8 October
Sponsor day
13:45 – Press conference, Museo del Calcio
14:00 – Meeting with the press (player)
17:00 – Training (open to press)

Wednesday 9 October
13:45 – Press Conference FIGC Partner
14:00 – Meeting with the press (player)
17:00 – Training (first 15 minutes open to press)

Thursday 10 October
11:00 – Training (behind closed doors)
15:50 – Departure of chartered train from Campo di Marte to Rome
17:20 – Arrival in Rome and subsequent journey to the Bambino Gesu Paediatric hospital
18:00 – Visit to Bambino Gesu Paediatric hospital

Friday 11 October
17:00 – Press conference
17:30 – Training at the Stadio Olimpico

Saturday 12 October
20:45 – Italia vs. Grecia at the Stadio Olimpico. Following the match, a meeting with the press and subsequent journey back to the hotel

Sunday 13 October
11:30 – Training (behind closed doors)

Monday 14 October
10:30 – Chartered flight from Rome to St. Gallen (Switzerland)
18:00 – Press conference
18:30 – Training at the Rheinpark Stadion – Vaduz

Tuesday 15 October
20:45 – Liechtenstein vs. Italy at the Rheinpark Stadion – Vaduz. Following the match, a meeting with the press and subsequent journey back to the hotel

Wednesday 16 October
10:00 – Chartered flight from St.Gallen to Milan Malpensa (11:10) and then journey to Rome (13:00)