And whether they are one of the favorites. Italy impressed in the opening game of the European Championship, blowing Turkey away 0-3 after a dominant performance. The goals came after the break via an own goal by Demiral, Immobile and Insigne.
Turkey – Italy in a nutshell:
- Key moment: The Italians continue to accelerate after the somewhat happy opening goal and Turkey completely cracks. Çakir can keep up appearances for a while with some good saves, but after Immobile’s 0-2, the Turks are completely in the loop.
- Man of the match: Ciro Immobile once again lived up to its reputation as a goal thief. His goal put the game in a decisive fold and it was in addition, his first goal for Italy in a major tournament. On top of that, Immobile also provided the assist for the 0-3.
- Remarkable: It was the night of the firsts. For the first time in history, the first European Championship goal was an own goal. Italy hit for the first time 3 times in a European Championship match and the Azzurri also recorded the biggest win in an opening match of a European Championship.
Extensive report from Turkey – Italy (0-3)
Çakir keeps Chiellini from the 0-1
The European Championship started with an impressive opening ceremony: lots of fireworks and a beautiful version of Nessun Dorma by the Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli. In any case, the Italians were wide awake for their opening game against Turkey and immediately claimed the ball.
Yet the Azzurri were only able to convert their dominance into a chance after more than fifteen minutes. After a nice one-two with Berardi, Insigne had the 0-1 at his foot, but the little Neapolitan put the ball wide.
Combining Italy, it was difficult to create opportunities and they could not count on much leniency from referee Makkelie. Immobile wanted, but rightly did not get a penalty after Söyüncü involuntarily hands.
The Azzurri managed to force a corner and it almost resulted in the 0-1 halfway through the first half. With a brilliant save, Çakir was able to push Chiellini’s header over the crossbar.
After that, Italy continued to fish for a penalty. First in vain after a tough duel between Barella and Yazici and shortly before half-time after hands by Çelik, but he made no unnatural movement and so the Azzurri got zero on the bill again. In between, Immobile’s header went just wide, a weak Turkey couldn’t do anything about it.
Goalkeeper Cakir keeps Chiellini from opening goal
Italy makes the difference after the break
Shortly after the break, Italy got what it deserved. Barella launched Berardi with a wonderful pass and saw his tight cross through Demiral disappear into the goal. An own goal as the first European Championship goal, that had never happened before.
Immediately afterwards, Çakir prevented Spinazzola from making it 0-2, but Italy was suddenly completely loose and did not relinquish control. Just past the hour, Spinazzola hit another fine save from Çakir, but this time Immobile scored from close range in the recap.
Turkey was played from pillar to post and in the final phase it became completely painful. Çakir wiped out his clever saves by handing in the ball just like that. The Azzurri punished it mercilessly, Insigne took care of the 0-3.
Italy has not missed its European Championship start and is brimming with confidence. The Italians are now unbeaten in 28 games and have kept a clean sheet in their last 9 games. Another cake at Turkey, which has to play full against Wales on Wednesday.
Painful! The first goal of the European Championship is an own goal by Turkey: 0-1
Immobile enters the 0-2 in the rebound
Badge punishes bad defense: 0-3
Mancini: “This is very rewarding”
- Roberto Mancini (Italy national coach): “We got off to a good start. It was a great match, which is very rewarding. We put in a good performance, played well and scored three goals. Our first half was also good, only we lacked precision and a bit of luck to score. After the opening goal there was more space and we had more chances. But the road is still long, we have to take it game by game.”
- Ciro Immobile (Italy): “I am emotional and very satisfied after this match. The group and staff did an excellent job. In the first half we played a little too fast and inaccurately. We bumped into their wall, but we were in control of the game. In the second half it went better and we were able to finish our chances.”
- Kenan Karaman (Turkey): “We were certainly not speculating on a 0-0 draw, we wanted to develop our own game. But unfortunately that didn’t work out. We wanted to play compact and then switch quickly, but we were too deep and didn’t get to the front. After the 0-1 we gave away too much space and the Italians punished that mercilessly. We are still a young team and we have to learn from this contest. There are still 2 games left, anything is still possible.”