European Cup .. Italy falls Wales and Switzerland with the waiting list
Wales joined Italy in the first round of the European Cup 2020, despite losing 0-1 to it on Sunday in Rome, in the third round of the group stage, while Switzerland became the third on the waiting list to qualify. Matteo Pesina scored the game’s only goal in the 39th minute, according to Agence France-Presse. Italy raised its score to 9 points, compared to 4 for Wales, which outperformed Switzerland on a goal difference, after the latter beat Turkey 3-1 on Sunday as well. But Switzerland will remain on the waiting list to know its fate regarding qualification or not, knowing that the best 4 teams in third place will reach the price of the final as well. At the Olympic Stadium in the Italian capital, Rome, and after securing qualification in the second round after two wins over Turkey and Switzerland by a score of 3-0, Italy coach Roberto Mancini rested most of the first-tier players. The coach made 8 substitutions, the most prominent of which was the return of Paris Saint-Germain playmaker Marco Verratti to the starting lineup after recovering from an injury that kept him out of action for 6 weeks, while he included a new trio of Andrea Belotti as a spearhead, Federico Chiesa and Federico Bernardeschi on the wings. On the other hand, Wales relied on its veteran players Gareth Bale and Aaron Ramsey. Italy won the full mark by achieving its third win in a row in the continental championship, with a single goal against Wales to take the lead. The Italian national team maintained its unbeaten record in 30 consecutive matches, equaling its record between 1935 and 1939. Italy has not conceded any goal over 1055 minutes. It was the first meeting of the two teams face-to-face in an official tournament, knowing that they had previously met 9 times, Italy won 7 times and Wales twice. On the other hand, Wales succeeded in three major participations in overcoming the group stage each time, as they did in the 1958 World Cup in Sweden, and the last edition of the European Cup in 2016 when they reached the semi-finals. Italy dominated the game, but without much danger to the Wales goal, and the Italian Emerson hit the first ball between the three woods, but Wales goalkeeper Danny Ward saved it easily (27). Welshman Chris Gunter responded with a header after a pass from Manchester United winger Daniel James, but it touched the crossbar (27). The Italian team succeeded in opening the scoring when Verratti raised a free kick inside the area, followed by Matteo Pesina, beyond the reach of the Welsh goalkeeper (39), raising his score to 3 goals in 7 international matches. Italy scored 7 goals in the first round for the first time in a major tournament since the 1998 World Cup in France. Italy opened the second half with a free kick from Bernardeschi left, but the post intervened to save his attempt (51). Then Italy goalkeeper Gian Luigi Donnarumma intervened, cutting the way on Aaron Ramsey two minutes later. Then it got worse when Wales defender Ethan Embado was sent off for his roughness on Bernardeschi (55), to complete the match with ten players. Embado became the youngest player in the history of the continental championship to be sent off with a red card directly in a match, at the age of 20 years and 279 days. Bale missed an opportunity that was not wasted when he found himself in front of the Italian goal and received a perfect ball, but he shot it high (76).