The Azzurre continue their European qualifying campaign in Zenica. Bertolini: "The team are fired up and focused"The Azzurre are returning to action after six months without a match. In the afternoon, the team will put in the finishing touches ahead of the match
Monday, September 21, 2020
Italy Women return to action tomorrow at 16:00 CEST, when they face Bosnia and Herzegovina in the Algarve Cup. Following the postponement of their match against Israel, the Azzurre will be taking to the pitch once more as they look to take another step towards qualification for the European Championship, which was postponed to 2022 earlier this year. Italy are level with Denmark at the top of their qualifying group, with both sides making a perfect start in the first six matches, picking up all the points available.
Bosnia and Herzegovina are sitting in second place on 15 points (with two more matches played than the Azzurre). They are coming into this match following a 4-0 defeat to Denmark, having already been beaten by Girelli and her teammates last October in Palermo: “They’re a team that are good at shutting you down,” noted Milena Bertolini, “they put a lot of players behind the ball and don’t give up any space whatsoever. We’ll need to be patient and keep our concentration, and stay in the match until the final minute.”
Should the Azzurre beat Bosnia and Herzegovina, their opponents will effectively be out of the race for European qualification, leaving a two-horse race between Italy and Denmark for the top spot. Italy and Denmark will be facing each other in October and December: “From this point onwards, every game will feel like a final,” emphasised Head Coach Milena Bertolini, “the team are fired up and focused, well aware of the importance of this match and desperate to return to action for their country after so long.”
The team will put in the finishing touches ahead of the match in an afternoon training session at the Zenica Football Training Centre, which will host tomorrow’s match. The Azzurre will have to do without Manuela Giugliano, who left the camp yesterday along with the three other players who weren’t called up for the match: Flaminia Simonetti, Tecla Pettenuzzo and Maria Luisa Filangeri.
Goalkeepers: Laura Giuliani (Juventus), Francesca Durante (Hellas Verona), Katja Schroffenegger (Fiorentina);
Defenders: Laura Fusetti (AC Milan), Elena Linari (Bordeaux), Alice Tortelli (Fiorentina), Valentina Bergamaschi (AC Milan), Lucia Di Guglielmo (Empoli), Elisa Bartoli (AS Roma), Lisa Boattin (Juventus), Linda Tucceri Cimini (AC Milan);
Midfielders: Marta Mascarello (Fiorentina), Aurora Galli (Juventus), Martina Rosucci (Juventus), Cecilia Prugna (Empoli), Arianna Caruso (Juventus);
Forwards: Cristiana Girelli (Juventus), Valentina Giacinti (AC Milan), Daniela Sabatino (Fiorentina), Stefania Tarenzi (FC Inter), Barbara Bonansea (Juventus), Benedetta Glionna (Empoli), Elisa Polli (Empoli).