Nations League: Giacomo Raspadori strike helps Italy beat England | Football news

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Giacomo Raspadori blasted Italy to a 1-0 win over England on Friday, keeping their hopes of making the Nations League final four alive. Napoli striker Raspadori concluded an otherwise uninspiring encounter with an excellent second half at the San Siro to keep the European champions two points behind League A, Group 3 leaders Hungary.

Roberto Mancini’s squad will take on Hungary on Monday in Budapest and will make it to the last four with a win, which would be a small boost for the Azzurri after missing out on their second consecutive World Cup.

England will be in Qatar in November, but the defeat in Milan sent Gareth Southgate’s side down to League B after another flat showing in which they barely created anything.

They have yet to win a game in the Nations League this season and are four points behind Germany, who are third after losing to Hungary and will play against England at Wembley, as Italy try to make it to the final stages.

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“We performed well against a strong team, we were attacking, created chances and controlled the game while bringing home the win. We needed these kind of wins against a top opponent,” Raspadori told Italian broadcaster Rai.

“We want to return to the team we were before and bring Italy back where we belong.”

Triumph at Euro 2020 seems almost a lifetime ago for Italy, who have been going through a crisis of results and confidence since they took home the trophy in July last year.

Mancini has tried to rethink his team after the humiliation of failing to qualify for this winter’s World Cup, but his squad was hampered by a host of injuries to key players in the lead up to the game, forcing him to switch to a full-back. up. three.

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Ciro Immobile was the fifth player injured in the run-up to Friday’s game and his front replacement Gianluca Scamacca was unlucky not to give Italy a fifth minute lead when his header was tipped off the crossbar from close range by Nick Pope.

Italy took center stage in the first quarter, but England slowly started to win football after being surprised by the hosts’ quick start.

England knew defeat would send them down, but despite dominating the ball, their problems creating chances continued, with Harry Kane firing their climax from a quiet first half from afar.

There was little to recommend about the spectacle both sides put up after the break, apart from Raspadori’s 68th minute winner, the only real touch of class of the match.

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The 22-year-old brilliantly put down Leonardo Bonucci’s long pass and easily skipped Kyle Walker before hitting a stunning shot home from the edge of the area.

The introduction of Jack Grealish to Bukayo Saka did little to improve England’s creativity, but Gianluigi Donnarumma made a few clever saves in quick succession to deny Harry Kane with 13 minutes left.

And it was Italy that should have doubled their lead in the closing stages as Manolo Gabbiadini went one-on-one with Pope before Federico Dimarco saw his shot go off the post.

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England kept pushing for an equaliser, but a solid Italy defense saw the hosts hold their own and give themselves something to play against Hungary.

(This story was not edited by Europe Times News staff and was generated automatically Platforms.)

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