TOPS/FLOPS – England overthrew Italy (1-2) in Naples on Thursday evening to win the first day of Group C of the Euro 2024 Qualifying. Here are our tops and our flops.
A record night for Harry Kane
Yes, it’s done. After equalizing Wayne Rooney’s record at the last World Cup, Tottenham striker Harry Kane has definitively written his name into the history of the English selection. By scoring his team’s second goal on Thursday night against Italy on a penalty (44th), Kane officially became the top scorer in the history of the Three Lions. A 54th achievement for his 84th appearance in the jersey of his country with victory at the key (1-2). What more ? The Spurs striker gave a true captain’s performance, motivating his team, returning to defend in the second half when the English were reduced to ten. Just a legend.
The beautiful story of Mateo Retegui
“He has been a starter for two years in the Argentine Championship and he has qualities that unfortunately we lack at the moment. We thought he didn’t want to come, he immediately said yes and we called him.”, said Roberto Mancini last week. Born on April 29, 1999 in Argentina and playing at Club Atlético Tigre, on loan from Boca Juniors, Mateo Retegui barely speaks Italian, has almost never set foot in the Boot and was naturalized very recently thanks to his origins. sicilians of his grandfather. Propelled holder this Thursday for this remake of the Euro final, the one who has never played in Europe succeeded in his first selection by scoring a nice goal on a caviar from Lorenzo Pellegrini to reduce the score (56th). A few ball losses, but he was able to stand out to attempt five strikes, half of his team’s attempts. A big presence.
The irregularity of the two teams
A funny performance. While England walked around with control and domination, Italy struggled to organize their defense and to be efficient, realistic or even enterprising in the offensive phases during the first act. Everything was reversed in the second half with a Nazionale much more concentrated and clean in their possession of the ball. As proof, the Three Lions simply attempted a total of zero shots in the second half. For a quarter-finalist team at the World Cup with such a golden generation, the English were almost more disappointed than the Italians in reconstruction, despite the victory. Luke Shaw was even expelled in the last quarter of an hour for loss of time then a big fault (80th).
The Italian Defense
How far away the golden period of Baresi, Maldini, Nesta, Cannavaro or even Facchetti seems. The Italian defense is simply unrecognizable. If the attack has often been singled out in recent years, it is especially the rear guard that sank this Thursday evening. With a pair Toloi – Acerbi, it seemed totally disorganized, especially in the first period on the opening of the score of Declan Rice (13th) where Harry Kane was not marked on the corner. Marking errors and communication to be desired, Italy no longer combines defensively.