In the friendly match at the Granillo, the Azzurrini made a comeback: after the away goal from Batagov, Lovato equaled before the two goals from the Lecce striker
March 27 – Reggio Calabria
A brace from Lorenzo Colombo knocks Ukraine out in the last test of our Under 21 team before the European Championship in June. After Mulattieri, two more goals from the centre-forward: Paolo Nicolato’s Italy is growing and has finally found the goals too.
Italy is in the expected formation, i.e. the best possible. Captain Ricci commands the midfield, with Fagioli and Bove on the sides. On the outside Bellanova and Udogie, in front of Cancellieri and Colombo. To protect Turati, a trio of giants like Okoli, Lovato and Pirola. It was known that it would have been a different match from the one in Serbia – and from those of the qualifiers. And in fact it is Ukraine that takes possession of the ball: it wants low buildings, but the mechanisms don’t work very well. The Azzurrini go up with the “fifths” on the full-backs and already in the 3′, on a high recovery, Fagioli can go for a shot: central. In the 11th minute Colombo and Fagioli didn’t understand each other after stealing the ball in the area after a mess between Talovyerov and goalkeeper Neshcheret. In the 18th minute Cancellieri comes on: escape to the right and bludgeoned by Batagov’s yellow card. From the free-kick designed by Fagioli, Lovato towers over Talovyerov’s 195 centimeters and surprises Neshcheret. Italy ahead. Deserved for the ability to block the opposing lines of play. Only once, in the 27th minute, a bank from Sikan opens a central corridor into which Kryskiv wants to send Kashchuk, Udogie with all his physicality closes his way. The Azzurrini increase their momentum and almost double their lead. In the 38th minute Cancellieri slalom landed on the edge of the area, Fagioli kicks the free-kick wide. After engaging Neshcheret following another high recovery, the Juventus player tries again from a standstill and does much better in the 39th minute: full post from a position close to the corner. But Cancellieri fails in the most sensational chance in recovery: Udogie gets rid of three Ukrainians and breaks through on the left, Lazio needs a low ball on the spot to stop and kick with his favorite foot, Matteo closes it too much with his left foot and doesn’t see the goal .
The turning point
The Udogie-Cancellieri connection opens the second half, with the Lazio player fleeing in an open field and running left foot raised for a corner by Neshcheret. In the 11th minute Bove made a weak shot, in the 17th minute a cross shot by Bellanova was cleared away by Talovyerov in front of goal. Italy in complete control and with higher ball possession. But in the 23rd minute, unexpected and sudden, the Ukrainian equalizer: Kashchuk goes one against two with Lovato and Pirola who stop him, but a rebound brings the ball back to his feet, the shot isn’t irresistible but Turati makes a mess with the feet. Everything needs to be redone, and Italy does it right, immediately with Oristanio for Cancellieri. In the 26th minute, the Azzurrini again ahead with great action: percussion by Udogie, finishing by Ricci, Colombo in the tow and shoot area, Neschcheret saves, Oristanio’s crossbar, Colombo again on the rebound who turns with his right foot and puts in the corner, great goal. The Lecce centre-forward repeats himself in the 37th minute: Oristanio runs off to the left at Batagov and draws a very soft cross for Colombo who dives and heads under the crossbar. Another great goal, from 9 true. We found it.
27 March – 22:10
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