It has been a contrasting period in Italian football, with the Azzurri first revelling in their success after winning the UEFA Euro 2020 then disappointing their fans by not qualifying for the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Consistency is not necessarily an issue as Italy have been one of the most consistent national sides in Europe since Roberto Mancini took over. However, a few bad results and dropped points were only good enough to take them into the World Cup qualifying play-offs. At this stage, they shocked their fans by losing to North Macedonia and missing out on the plane to Qatar for the World Cup.

Mancini has a big task at hand, as he has stayed on despite many seeking his resignation. The supposed new era already began with a 3-0 loss to Argentina in the Finalissima, and the next one, coming shortly against Germany, is not the ideal start for the Azzurri this summer. Add the forthcoming England and Hungary games into the mix, and Italy are in for a big test of character.

Italy’s opponents, Germany, come into this fixture in a different state of mind. In the aftermath of their Round of 16 exit from the Euros, Hansi Flick took over and will be hoping to set things straight before they fly out to Qatar later this year.

Italy Probable Lineup (4-3-3): Donnarumma; Di Lorenzo, Bonucci, Bastoni, Biraghi; Fratessi, Tonali, Barella; Politano, Scamacca, Immobile

Germany Probable Lineup (4-2-3-1): Neuer; Kehrer, Schlotterbeck, Rudiger, Raum; Kimmich, Musiala; Gnabry, Muller, Sane; Adeyemi

Key Stats

Italy have beaten Germany just once in their last six meetings, including friendlies, while losing once.

Since their UEFA Euro 2012 semi-final win, Italy have not beaten Germany, with Mario Balotelli scoring the goals.

Germany have been unbeaten against Italy in their last four games.

Germany have played just one team (Netherlands) among FIFA’s top ten since they started playing under Hansi Flick.

Thomas Muller is Germany’s most capped player in the current squad with 112.

Player To Watch

Serge Gnabry


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