Italy took on Belgium in the UEFA Nations League match for the third place at the Allianz Stadium in Turin. And they won! As France beat Spain 2-1 for first place in UEFA Nations League football news, Italy defeated Belgium 2-1 as well. Curiously, Italy lost by this same score in their own home, Italy (San Siro, Milan), to Spain, who became finalists.
Roberto Mancini has won Italy the Euro 2020 title, and has now secured them third place in Nations League too. Indeed, the manager’s become the fastest to reach the milestone of 30 wins with the fewest matches (44) in history.
Before the match, meanwhile, Belgium goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois claimed that “the game for the third place is pointless”.
Despite these criticisms, though, neither side showed any signs of complacency in the opening moments here, playing with equal intensity.
In fact, Real Madrid goalkeeper was the one to make the first effort to prevent an opening goal, as fans can see here!
UEFA Nations League Football News – Italy Defeated Belgium 2-1
Thibaut Courtois blocked Federico Chiesa’s effort, initially, so it was actually Belgium who came closest to taking the first lead. 25 minutes into the game, Michy Batshuayi passed to his teammate Alexis Saelemaekers, who sent his strike over the crossbar.
Later, much like the first half, the second half also started in high intensity. And Italy duly found a breakthrough just one minute into this second half.
A goal-scorer in their triumphant summer UEFA European Championships quarter-final over Belgium, Nicolo Barella scored a goal yet again.
He added his name on the scoreboard by sending the ball into the bottom left corner of the net.
Fully aware the defeat could knock them off the top of the FIFA World Rankings, Roberto Martinez switched his plan. He turned to Kevin De Bruyne to inspire his team into action.
But the substitution was of little help when the hosting team doubled their advantage.
Timothy Castagne was unable to handle Chiesa’s trickery inside the box. This brought the Juventus forward down, before Domenico Berardi converted the penalty given after the VAR review.
A late Charles De Ketelaere goal on his international debut threatened to spark a Belgium comeback, in added time. However, despite this small consolation for Belgium, the final whistle eventually recorded a 2-1 ‘Azzurri’ victory for Roberto Mancini’s men.
Italy – Belgium 2:1
Goals: Barella 46’, Berardi 65’ (p.) – de Ketalaere 86’