Nazionale U20

Italy can’t turn it around. Czech Republic win 2-1 in Pesaro

The guests took a lightning-fast two-goal lead after just 13 minutes played. Moro’s goal wasn’t enough for the Azzurrini, who played well despite not managing to find the equaliser

Thursday, November 11, 2021

Italy can’t turn it around. Czech Republic win 2-1 in Pesaro

So near yet so far to the comeback. Italy U20 couldn’t overturn an early deficit against the Czech Republic and, in spite of a spirited fightback, come away from Pesaro following a 2-1 defeat. It was, for Bollini’s side, the first defeat in four Elite League matches. On Monday 15 November, the Azzurrini host Romania at the Stadio Enzo Ricci in Sassuolo (14:00 CET).

 “Conceding two goals in just 13 minutes would have been a knock-out for other teams,” coach Alberto Bollini said after full time. “The boys deserve praise for believing right until the very end and to have got back on their feet with application and desire. The result leaves a bitter taste in the mouth but you have to consider the growth of these lads, who, once again today, showed a brilliant mindset.”

The game.  The guests opened the scoring in the first minute thanks to an accurate low, driven shot from Kristan. It was a vicious early blow that stunned the Azzurrini, who would have to come from behind practically straight from kick-off. The Czechs could play their game: quick and dangerous counter-attacks. The second goal came on the break too as Novak did brilliantly to slot it past Gelmi and give the guests a two-goal lead inside fifteen minutes.

Bollini’s boys tried to kick through the gears but couldn’t deal that telling blow that would get them back into the game. In the 30th minute, Sekulov tried to get things moving but the Juventus forward couldn’t convert. The game entered a rather stale period but, in the 36th minute, Moro pulled one back for the Azzurrini to make it 2-1.

The flow of the game barely changed after the break, with Italy trying their hardest to move the ball around and carve out chances to equalize, while the guests continued to look dangerous on the break. The first real chance of the second half fell to Moro, who fired straight at goalkeeper Trefil. Bollini applauded the effort from the Italy technical area: it was a good move but not rewarded with the goal. The Czech ‘keeper was tested again, this time by Cortinovis after combining with Moro (73’) before, twelve minutes later, Gelmi kept Italy in it, denying the Czechs on the break. A final assault from Bollini’s side wasn’t enough and the Czech Republic won it on the day.

Italy 1-2 Czech Republic
: Gelmi; Pierozzi (78' Bergonzi), Armini, Viti, Stramaccioni (70' Di Serio); Milanese, Leone (70' Bove), Cortinovis (78' Riccardi); Oristanio (21' Cangiano), Moro, Sekulov. Subs.: Pizzignacco, Bonini, Papetti, Dalle Mura, Bianco, Gyabuaa, Vergani, Tongya. Coach: Bollini
CZECH REPUBLIC: Trefil; Kozeluh (62' Hosek), Vlcek, Suchomel; Kristan (93' Kozel), Pudhorocki (62' Jonas); Jaron (62' Doudera), Novak (62' Tkac), Rynes (74' Cienciala); Krobot (62' Toula). Subs.: Hornicek, Endl. Coach: Zilak
REFEREE: Sacchi. Linesmen: Macaddino and Di Giacinto. IV Official: Camplone
GOALS: 1' Kristan, 14' Novak, 36' Moro


Elite League U20

2 September: Poland 0-2 Italy; Romania 2-1 Portugal; Czech Republic 0-2 Germany;
6 September: Germany 1-1 Norway; England 6-1 Romania;
7 September: Portugal 0-0 Poland;
7 October: England 1-1 Italy; Portugal 1-2 Norway; Romania 2-1 Czech Republic; Poland 0-0 Germany
11 October: Czech Republic 0-5 England; Germany 4-0 Romania; Norway 1-5 Polonia;
12 October: Italy 1-1 Portugal

Germany (4 matches played) 8 points, England (3) 7, Romania (4) 6, Poland (4) and Italy (4) 5, Norway (3) 4, Czech Republic (4) 3, Portugal (4) 2


Squad list

Goalkeers: Ludovico Gelmi (Feralpi Salò), Samuel Pizzignacco (Vicenza);

Defenders: Nicolò Armini (Piacenza), Federico Bergonzi (Feralpi Salò), Federico Bonini (Gubbio), Christian Dalle Mura (Cremonese), Andrea Papetti (Brescia), Edoardo Pierozzi (Alessandria), Diego Stramaccioni (Juventus), Mattia Viti (Empoli);

Midfielders: Alessandro Bianco (Fiorentina), Edoardo Bove (Roma), Alessandro Cortinovis (Reggina), Emmanuel Gyabuaa (Perugia), Giuseppe Leone (Juventus), Tommaso Pantaleo Milanese (Alessandria), Franco Daryl Tongya Heubang (Olympique Marseille);

Attackers: Gianmarco Cangiano (Bologna), Giuseppe Di Serio (Benevento), Luca Moro (Catania), Gaetano Pio Oristanio (Volendam), Alessio Riccardi (Roma), Nikola Sekulov (Juventus), Edoardo Vergani (Salernitana).

Staff - Head Coach, Alberto Bollini; Chief of the Delegation Evaristo Beccalossi; Secretary Giulio Massi; Assistant head coach, Enrico Battisti; Fitness coach, Marco Montini; Goalkeeping coach, Graziano Vinti; Match Analyst, Francesco Donzella; Nutritionis, Cristian Petri; Doctors: Matteo Vitali, Luca Labianca and Sofia Calaciura Clarich. Physiotherapists, Tommaso Cannata and Andrea Cantera.