Nazionale U21

The Azzurrini ready for the test against England. Nicolato: "Every match is helping us grow".

On Thursday in Pescara (17.30 CEST, Rai2), Italy start their season as they prepare for the European Championships. “We wanted to face high-quality opponents to understand what level we are at. I have asked the lads for personality, to want the ball and not leave it for someone else"

Wednesday, September 21, 2022

The Azzurrini ready for the test against England. Nicolato:

The finals of the Under 21s European Championship are nine months away, but for the National Under 21 side it is already time to test themselves. On Thursday at 17.30 CEST at the 'Adriatico-Giovanni Cornacchia' Stadium in Pescara (live on Rai2), Paolo Nicolato's Azzurrini will start the new season off against a prestigious opponent, England. It is a game against tough opposition that was scheduled precisely with the aim of preparing the team for the tournament in June in Romania and Georgia. "We will face a strong team, very well structured who use the ball well, it's what we wanted" - the Head Coach said in his press conference. "It's a match that I do not consider a friendly, but one step in our approach to the European Championship. These are matches that allow us to understand who we can trust, to understand which players will travel with us. In games like these poor players slip up, especially in their mental approach”.

"Clearly, the bar will be raised compared to the games that Italy won to gain qualification for the European Championship: "The difficulty that I believe we will encounter is evaluating ourselves off the ball", Nicolato continued. "In the qualifying matches we always dominated possession and struggled in moments of pressure. To take it a step further, we need to be put under a bit of pressure, so I hope the team will go out onto the pitch and dominate the game and play our way. I asked the players for personality, to want to have the ball and not to leave it the others".

The Azzurrini coach emphasised that the group of 27 players (after Salvatore Esposito left the camp to join the Mancini's First Team) has only seven boys born in 2000 and another 13 ahead of a two-year period, and that the boys are gaining experience at their respective clubs: "The thing to do is to standardise the knowledge of each individual according to our needs. The players who are playing consistently are confident, they improve quickly. And you grow as the competition goes on, which cannot be replicated by any kind of training."

The head-to-head with England, at Under 21 level, favours Italy: "But I'm not very interested in the past, nor in the final score. We don't want easy games to win: we must try to use these opportunities and these opponents well, we want them to be of a high level. We have important and fast margins for growth and we must take advantage of every single opportunity because between now and the European Championship we only have two official FIFA games, one of which is a long away from the tournament. This time must not be wasted”.

Before the friendly with England - and also before Monday's friendly against Japan in Castel di Sangro - a minute's silence will be observed in memory of the victims of the floods in the Marche region.

TICKET INFO: Tickets for the matches in Pescara and Castel di Sangro can be purchased at Vivaticket sales points and on the websites and Reduced prices are available for Under 18s.




Squad List

Goalkeepers: Elia Caprile (Bari), Alessandro Plizzari (Pescara), Alessandro Sorrentino (Monza) Stefano Turati (Frosinone);
Defenders: Raoul Bellanova (Inter), Andrea Cambiaso (Bologna), Simone Canestrelli (Pisa), Alessandro Circati (Parma), Giorgio Cittadini (Modena), Caleb Okoli (Atalanta), Fabiano Parisi (Empoli), Lorenzo Pirola (Salernitana), Matteo Ruggeri (Atalanta), Giorgio Scalvini (Atalanta), Mattia Viti (OGC Nice), Destiny Iyenoma Udogie (Udinese);
Midfielders: Edoardo Bove (Roma), Nicolò Fagioli (Juventus), Fabio Miretti (Juventus), Filippo Ranocchia (Monza), Nicolò Rovella (Monza), Emanuel Vignato (Bologna);
Forwards: Nicolò Cambiaghi (Empoli), Lorenzo Colombo (Lecce), Sebastiano Esposito (Anderlecht), Luca Moro (Frosinone), Pietro Pellegri (Torino).

Il programma

Mercoledì 21 settembre
h. 17.00 allenamento (chiuso)
h. 19.00 trasferimento presso Hotel Carlton - Pescara (PE)

Giovedì 22 settembre
h. 17.30 Stadio Adriatico – G. Cornacchia di Pescara
a seguire a seguire conferenza stampa tramite Zoom ed in presenza e rientro a Castel di Sangro

Venerdì 23 settembre
h. 13.45 conferenza stampa 1 calciatore (Zoom ed in presenza)
h. 17.30 allenamento (aperto alla stampa)

Sabato 24 settembre
h. 10.30 allenamento (aperto alla stampa)
h. 13.45 conferenza stampa 1 calciatore (Zoom ed in presenza)

Domenica 25 settembre
h. 14.00 conferenza stampa Tecnico Nicolato (Zoom ed in presenza)
h. 17.30 allenamento (aperto alla stampa i primi 15 minuti)

Lunedì 26 settembre
h. 15.30 Stadio Patini di Castel di Sangro
a seguire conferenza stampa tramite Zoom ed in presenza e scioglimento della delegazione