England vs Italy: 5 players England should watch out for
As Gareth Southgate welcomes the Italian national team to Wembley, here are five players who could cause his team problems.
Luigi Di Biagio has an unfortunate place in his country’s history. It was his missed-penalty at the World Cup in 1998 that consigned the Azzurri to their quarter-final defeat against France.
To a more educated observer, however, he was a talented defensive midfielder who boasted successful stints at both Internazionale and Roma.
Filling the Italian managerial vacancy on a temporary basis, it’s unlikely that Di Biagio will have the chance to emulate Enzo Bearzot and win an international tournament without managing a single game in Serie A.
Despite a chastening 2-0 defeat to Argentina at the Etihad Stadium last week, there were encouraging signs of progress for a side that had been strangled by Giampiero Ventrone’s conservative tactics.
The Italians lined up with an enterprising 4-3-3, with a young starting eleven marshalled well by veterans like Gianluigi Buffon and Leonardo Bonucci.
With a side keen on rebuilding their reputation after failing to reach Russia this summer, England must keep an eye on the following five players if they’re to secure a result.