Italy vs. San Marino, doesn’t exactly catch your attention in terms of being a marquee matchup. However, it was a big game for Italy. Ventura called-up a bunch of young, up and coming players to play in this friendly. The Italian coach had been running training camps for younger players, and now this was their chance to showcase that hard work.
Domenico Berardi, a player that Italian fans have heard about for a while now and have enjoyed watching him play at Sassuolo, finally made his senior team debut. Berardi was the captain for Italy. Joining Berardi in the starting lineup were:
It was an extra-special day for Simone Scuffet, he celebrates his birthday, turns 21, and gets to start in goal for Italy.
While San Marino are an inferior opponent, this was still a big moment for these young Italian players. Gianluca Lapadula opened up the scoring in the 10th minute and the scoring did not stop there. Crotone’s defender, Gian Marco Ferrari, scored just a few minutes later. Then Andrea Petagna scored and Lapadula got another. Before you could even settle in to watch the game, Italy had a 4-0 lead. These were the first goals scored by Lapadula, Ferrari, and Petagna for the Italian National Team.
Italy wasted no time in the second half to pick up on the scoring. Defender, Mattia Caldara scored off the play of a corner kick to give Italy a 5-0 lead. That was Caldara’s first goal for Italy. Literally a minute later, Lapadula scored his 3rd goal of the game and blowout was in full effect. Matteo Politano scored to give Italy a 7-0 lead, and yes, you guessed it right, that was Politano’s first goal for Italy.
Again, we know San Marino was an inferior opponent, but the performance this young Italy team put on was still impressive and they should be pleased. Anytime you win 8-0, you should be pretty happy about that. The Azzurri were never tested defensively and to be honest, they were probably a bit bored at that end of the field. Fiorentina’s Federico Chiesa did not score, but he played a great game. He was very involved in the build-up play and had one assist. Chiesa is one of Serie A’s brightest young talents. Italy has some great young talents, who will soon become household names.
Gli Azzurri will play Uruguay in an international friendly on June 7th and will play Liechtenstein on June 11th in a World Cup Qualifier. Those lineups should resemble more of the players you would expect.
Goal Scorers: Lapadula (10′, 19′, 49′), Ferrari (13′), Petagna (16′), Caldara (48′), Politano (58′), Bonini (own goal, 65′)