• News

Youth and Mancini pivotal to Italy’s success

Getty Images

Italy are unbeaten in 12 successive games and Leonardo Bonnuci attributes it to Roberto Mancini and the influx of youth in the Azurri setup.

Italy are a footballing dynasty with four World Cup titles. Therefore, it was a surprise to the footballing world when they failed to qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup. 

Roberto Mancini was appointed as head coach of La Nazionale in a bid to regain their lost glory. The former Inter Milan manager has delivered on his promise, easily qualifying for the European Championships. 

Mancini should also be credited for rejuvenating the squad with youthful exuberance. The 55-year-old tactician has Leonardo Bonucci in awe of his abilities. The Juventus defender believes the environment has changed in the Italian national team and it is all down to Mancini.

“We were away for 10 months, so that made things difficult and it was only natural we’d struggle a little, but during the three months of the lockdown we did talk regularly to make sure we remembered that we are a strong squad who want to be as united as we were during the Euro 2020 qualifiers,” Football Italia quoted Bonucci in his press conference.

“This is no longer a selection of international players, it is a genuine team. After we failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup, we rediscovered our enthusiasm thanks also to the young players and the work of the coach.”

Italy drew against Eden Dzeko’s Bosnia, which ended their eleven match winning streak. Bonucci wants the side to re-group ahead of their crunch Nations League fixture against the Netherlands.

“The Nations League is an important competition and the opening draw makes our push for the top spot more complicated, but we started that way last year as well and still came very close to reaching the final phase.”