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Euro 2022: Everything you need to know about Italy


Italy Euro 2022 group stage fixtures

Read more about France, Iceland and Belgium by clicking on the team's name.

How they qualified

Major tournament record

European Championship

Best European Championship performance: Runners-up - 1993 & 1997.

Most-recent European Championship performance: Group Stages- 2017.

FIFA World Cup

Best World Cup performance: Quarter-finals 1991 & 2019.

Most-recent World performance: Quarter-finals- 2019.

Italy at Euro 2022: Will le Azzurre end their wait for a major tournament final?

After the men won the European Championships at Wembley last July, can the women's national team repeat the feat this time round?

On the women's side, Italy's best-ever performances at major tournaments came back in the 1990s.

They lost to Norway in the 1993 Euros Final on home soil, before falling at the final hurdle again four years later, beaten by Germany in Oslo.

This century, le Azzurre have gone no further than the quarter-finals, actually finishing rock bottom of their group at the most recent edition.

In 2019, Italy ended their 20-year World Cup exile, topping their group, above Australia and Brazil, before knocking out China PR.

However, once again, their adventure came to an end at the quarter-final stage, beaten 2-0 by eventual runners-up Netherlands.

Once again, the last eight may be the height of their ambitions, but Milena Bertolini's team need to focus on getting out of the group first and foremost.

In qualifying for this tournament, le Azzurre finished second in their section, losing 3-1 at home to group winners Denmark.

Likewise, in World Cup qualifying, Switzerland won 2-1 in Palermo last November before Italy got revenge in Thun back in April.

Encouragingly, during April's Algarve Cup, they beat both Denmark and Norway before drawing with Sweden, losing a subsequent shootout.

But, this shows Italy can compete with some of the continent's strongest team, form they'll hope to carry into this competition.

France and Italy, who meet on matchday one, are expected to get out of Group D with Iceland and Belgium as dangerous outsiders.

So, for the eighth tournament in a row, Italy are likely to go out in the quarter-finals or earlier.

Key players: Sara Gama

Italian captain Sara Gama epitomises the cliché rock at the back.

The 33 year old has won 128 national team caps, featuring at three European Championships at the most-recent World Cup.

Five years ago, as a right-back, but started all five matches at World Cup 2019 in her more familiar position at the heart of defence.

Overall, only Patrizia Panico (204), Tatiana Zorri (155), Carolina Morace (153) and Alessia Tuttino (133) have won more caps for le Azzurre than Gama.

Two of the defender's seven international goals have come during World Cup 2023 qualifying, netting against Croatia and Lithuania last autumn.

At club level, either side of a brief spell with PSG, Gama was won 14 domestic trophies with Brescia and current employers Juventus.

For le Bianconere, she has made 99 appearances, winning the domestic treble and reaching the Champions League quarter-finals this season.

Up against the best national teams around, Gama will need to be on top form if Italy are to enjoy a deep run.

Key players: Barbara Bonansea

Italy's other players to watch can be found in the forward line, including Barbara Bonansea.

The Juventus striker has scored 30 international goals to date, netted her first major tournament goal against Australia three summers ago.

More recently, she scored the winner in the Algarve Cup victory over Denmark, also netting twice in World Cup 2023 qualifying.

Bonansea, like club teammate Gama, has hoovered up Italian club honours during her career.

After winning seven trophies in three seasons at Brescia, the 31 moved to Juve, with whom she's lifted five Scudettos, two Coppas and three Supercoppas.

In the Champions League, Bonansea netted against St. Pölten, ŽFK Sasa and Chelsea as Juve reached the knockout phase for the first time.

She will form part of a deadly front two, hoping to fire Italy to an unexpected triumph.

Key players: Cristiana Girelli

The other deadly striker in this squad is Cristiana Girelli who, just like the other key players identified, is a Juventus player.

Since arriving in Turin four years ago, she has scored 74 goals in 91 appearances, claiming the Capocannoniere award in 2021.

In this season's Champions League, the 32 year old scored nine times, including against Wolfsburg and Lyon, showing she can mix it with the best.

For Italy, Girelli has scored 52 in 86 caps, including at the last Euros against Sweden and the most recent World Cup against Jamaica.

The latter was actually a hat-trick, making her one of only 12 European women to have left a World Cup game with a matchball.

Meanwhile, her goal at Euro 2017, was actually an 86th minute winner against Sweden as Italy claimed their only victory of the tournament.

She'll certainly be hoping to add to her goal tally at this tournament, possibly as part of an Italian side making a surprise run.

Italy possible starting line-up for Euro 2022

Italy's full squad for Euro 2022

Goalkeepers

Defenders

Midfielders

Forwards


Ben Gray

Ben Gray

Arsenal fan – follow them over land and sea (and Leicester); sofa Celtic supporter; a bit of a football '"encyclopedia".



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