After the comprehensive 3-0 defeat to Argentina in the CONMEBOL-UEFA Cup of Champions final, Italy will be looking to bounce back to winning ways when they host Germany at the Renato Dall’Ara Stadium in the opening match of the Nations League campaign on Saturday at 19:45GMT.
Can Italy Bounce Back to Winning Ways against Germany
Italy have had massive setbacks in recent matches; this was especially the case in their 109 loss to North Macedonia, which meant that they will not be in the World Cup in Qatar in November.
The Azzurri also lost 3-0 to Argentina, which further compounded their woes. Even after winning the Euros, Italian manager Roberto Mancini will be looking to pick up the pieces against Germany to ensure they start well their Nations League campaign.
The focus will be on picking up the confidence of Italy’s players in time to face a high-quality German side that is looking for a flying start to their Nations League campaign.
Can Germany Make a Winning Start to their Nation League Against Rivals Italy?
Hansi Flick will be hoping his side can get off to a flying start by getting a statement win in Italy.
Germany will be looking to re-build from their round-of-16 exit from the UEFA Euros at the hands of England as they build up to their World Cup opener against Japan in Qatar.
Flick’s side will be facing an Italian side low on confidence after they failed to qualify for the World Cup and just as his counterpart Roberto Mancini begins to transition the team by introducing younger players.
The focus for Flick and his men will be to provide a robust performance that highlights that they have moved on from their failure at the Euros and build momentum towards their World Cup campaign.
The Azzurri have won just two matches out of their last ten outings in international football. These wins came against Lithuania (5-0) in the World Cup Qualifiers Group stage and Turkey (3-2) in an international friendly.
The two defeats came against North Macedonia in a World Cup Qualifiers, which meant that they will not be in Qatar 2022, and in the match against Argentina in which they lost the CONMEBOL-UEFA Cup.
In this run of ten matches, the Mancini’s men have had six draws; this run of form highlights the challenges Italy are facing in being decisive in their matches.
Roberto Mancini will be looking to ensure that his side have the cutting edge to decide matches ahead of the blockbuster clash with Germany.
In their last eight outings in international football, Hansi Flick’s Germany have won eight matches, drawn once, and lost once.
The one loss came in the UEFA Euro round-of-16 tie against England in which Germany were knocked out in a 2-0 reverse against the Three Lions.
Subsequently, Germany have gone embarked on a nine-match unbeaten run that demonstrated their massive power and form heading into the clash with Italy and the beginning of the Nations League campaign.
The drawn in this run of form came in a 1-1 result against the Netherlands in an international friendly. This was the warm-up match ahead of their travel to Italy to face the Azzurri.
Possible Starting Lineups
Donnarumma; G. Di Lorenzo, L. Bonucci, G. Chiellini, Emerson; M. Pessina, Jorginho, N. Barella; F. Bernardeschi, A. Belotti, G. Raspadori
Neuer; D. Raum, N. Schlotterbeck, A. Rudiger, T. Kehrer; i. Gundogan, J. Musiala; L. Sane, K. Havertz, T. Muller; T. Werner
Players to Watch
In the absence of Ciro Immobile, the Torino striker will be tasked with leading the Azzurri line in the clash with Germany.
Belotti has the physical attributes, pace, movement, and finishing touch needed for the Azzurri striker, which means he will be crucial in weaving together the attacking approach adopted by Mancini and bringing other players into play.
The experienced Bayern Munich forward is crucial for Hansi Flick’s team as he helps some of the younger players get into the national team.
Muller’s movement, creative skills, and leadership will be essential for Germany when they take on Italy on Saturday.
Germany will start the match fast by maintaining possession and dictating the tempo of the match. Italy will respond by pressing high and ensuring that Italy do not establish dominance in midfield and wide areas.
Germany are favourites to win the match and get off to a winning start to their Nations League campaign.
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