Italy 2 Saudi Arabia 1: Mario Balotelli nets in first begin for 4 years as Roberto Mancini launches Azzurri reign with victory
MARIO BALOTELLI fired the opener on his first begin for 4 years as Roberto Mancini launched his Italy reign with a pleasant victory.
Controversial Good striker Balotelli and his second-half substitute Andrea Belotti put the Azzurri in command, earlier than Yahya Al-Shehri slotted a comfort.
The outcome will imply little to the Italians because it was a World Cup warm-up sport for the Saudis – however not for them.
However at the very least they held off a spirited revival from their opponents on this energetic conflict in Switzerland.
Former Manchester Metropolis chief Mancini chosen a facet that had bagged simply 24 targets between them – 13 of these from Balotelli and 5 from Leonardo Bonucci.
However their early stress and probabilities led to Balotelli drilling house an excellent aim from exterior the realm on 21 minutes.
Lorenzo Insigne nearly doubled Italy’s lead as their fluency and confidence soared.
The Azzurri’s Zenit St-Petersbrug left-back Domenico Criscitol noticed his shot deflected onto the bar within the 40th minute.
However the Saudis improved vastly after the break, though Italy nonetheless menaced on the break.
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And halfway by way of the half Belotti bundled house the Italians’ second aim from the center of a crowded field.
Al Sheri, although, quickly punished a defensive slip from Davide Zappacosta on the midway line to slender the deficit, Salem AlDawsari feeding him with a neat flick.
That sparked an exhilarating climax, however Italy deservedly held on to win.
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