Italy wins again, and that is not news. He did it for the twelfth time in a row and adding 31 games without losing, the best record in its entire history. The big news is that This Italy knows how to triumph also by suffering, in the old style. Austria was heroic and deserved to reach extra time, but there they fell to the quality of Mancini’s revulsives, who he won a pass to the quarterfinals much more complicated than expected.
The aggressiveness of the Austrians was immediately confirmed. The first to attack were those of Foda with a great arrival from Baumgartner, whose low center scared the Azzurra, that with the passage of the minutes took the reins of the game, but without the usual efficiency. The wall formed by midfielders Grillitsch and Schlager with the centrals Dragovic and Hinteregger, he gave very little space to Mancini’s, who touched the ball almost never finding gaps. His most effective weapon was once again Spinazzola’s arrivals, which created a great opportunity for Barella, whose shot was neutralized with his foot by Bachmann. In the absence of solutions, Immobile tried to break the match from afar, and his shot from outside the box, which hit the crossbar, represented the best that Italy showed before the break.
In the second half, for the first time, the limits of the National, especially mental. The fear of losing everything detracted from the Italians, who began to lose their minds. Easy passes failed, protests arose when it didn’t make sense and, overwhelmed as ever, they gave more and more space to those of Foda, who did not take advantage of it for a matter of centimeters. In 65 ‘, Arnautovic headed into the net a center combed by Alaba and celebrated the goal by silencing the rival fans. After a long review of the play, however, the VAR canceled his joy for offside. It was the best moment for Austria, who had already touched the goal with a foul from Alaba and, shortly after, also asked for a penalty for a grab from Pessina to Lainer (Another play canceled due to illegal position). Left behind the scares and suffering, Italy returned mainly thanks to its revulsives. Locatelli, Pessina, Chiesa and Belotti they calmed the medullary and woke up the lead.
La Azzurra reached 90 ‘locking up the rival in his area and Berardi, with a scissors without aim, wasted the winning goal. The Italians began overtime with the momentum that was lacking throughout the game and opened the can. A Spinazzola already in Fabio Grosso 2006 version, unstoppable and decisive, found a center to Federico Chiesa, who controlled the ball with his head and glared at Bachmann. Then, in addition, those of Mancini they lengthened their lead with Pessina, which ended a collective move to pass from Acerbi. Everything seemed headed for the party tricolor, but Kalajdzic, with a great header on the plate at 116 ‘, broke Donnarumma’s unbeaten record (the Azzurra he had gone more than 1143 minutes without conceding goals, another record) and also gave excitement to the last minutes of this unforgettable match. Italy, this time, did not break down: He hadn’t suffered for a long time, but apparently he already learned how to do it. For Mancini this is huge news. None of the four stars that the National his shield was sewn without suffering.
Matteo pessina (66 ‘, Barella), Belotti (83 ‘, Immobile), Federico Chiesa (83 ‘, Berardi), Schopf (89 ‘, Christoph Baumgartner), Sasa kalajdzic (96 ‘, Arnautovic), Gregoritsch (105 ‘, Xavier Schlager), Crystalline (107 ‘, Insigne), S. Ilsanker (113 ‘, Laimer), Trimmel (113 ‘, Stefan Lainer)
1-0, 94 ‘: Federico Chiesa, 2-0, 104 ‘: Matteo pessina, 2-1, 113 ‘: Sasa kalajdzic
Referee: Anthony Taylor
VAR Referee: Stuart Attwell
Arnautovic (1 ‘, Yellow) Say Lorenzo (49 ‘, Yellow) Barella (50 ‘, Yellow) Hinteregger (102 ‘, Yellow) Dragovic (120 ‘, Yellow