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Spain vs Italy predictions: Azzurri ready for revenge
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Daniel Childs
Roberto Mancini aims to lead Italy to the Nations League final at the expense of Spain
Roberto Mancini aims to lead Italy to the Nations League final at the expense of Spain

- Spain have won only one of their last five matches
- Two of Italy’s four wins in their last six have been by 2-0 scorelines
- Recommended bet: Italy to win

Italy bowed out of the 2020-21 Nations League with a 2-1 semi-final loss to Spain, but the Azzurri are presented with an opportunity for revenge in Enschede where they begin their 2023 finals campaign.

Roberto Mancini has had mixed fortunes as Italy's head coach. He led them to glory at Euro 2020 but was brought crashing back down to earth when failing to secure a place at the 2022 World Cup.

Spain fared far better at Euro 2020 - reaching the last four - than the 2022 World Cup where they suffered a quarter-final penalty shootout loss to Morocco.

However, both nations have a history of major tournament success and will settle for nothing less than lifting the trophy.

Team news

Central defender David Garcia and attacker Nico Williams were withdrawn from the Spain squad due to injuries and their places were filled by Nacho and Ansu Fati.

Pedri, Gerard Moreno and Bryan Gil miss out through injuries and Alvaro Morata is expected to take the captain's armband.

Mancini has opted for an experienced Italy squad, with 36-year-old central defender Leonardo Bonucci and 33-year-old striker Ciro Immobile returning to the fold.

Federico Chiesa has also been recalled and will be aiming to score his first goals since September 2021.

Alvaro Morata is likely to captain Spain when they face Italy in Enschede
Alvaro Morata is likely to captain Spain when they face Italy in Enschede

The stats

Spain's 2-0 loss away to Scotland in Euro 2024 qualifying left them with just one victory from their last five matches.

However, they won three of their final four Nations League group stage matches without conceding a goal.

Italy finished top of a tough Nations League group featuring Germany and England after winning their final two fixtures in the section.

The Azzurri have won four of their last six games and two of those successes have been by a 2-0 scoreline.

Three of Italy's last four Nations League matches have featured less than three goals.


Italy went from the sublime, being crowned champions at Euro 2020, to the ridiculous by missing out on a second successive World Cup finals, but they can stay in the hunt for Nations League glory by defeating Spain at De Grolsch Veste in Enschede.

The Azzurri got off to a slow start in Euro 2024 qualifying by losing 2-1 at home to England and could face a tough battle with Ukraine to secure one of the two qualification spots.

For now their minds are firmly fixed on the Nations League and  Mancini has left no stone unturned with regards to selection.

Italy's squad features plenty of experience, with seven players capped 40 times or more.

But there is a nice mix which includes talented young forwards Mario Retegui and Wilfried Gnonto, who are in the early stages of potentially exciting international careers.

Spain have high hopes for some of their less experienced players, but the standout individual of their younger generation is undoubtedly midfielder Pedri, who misses the tournament through injury.

The Iberians lacked a cutting edge at the World Cup and it is hard to see that situation improving this summer given their lack of top-class attacking talent.

Their 2-0 loss away to Scotland in March was a very disappointing result and performance, and a huge improvement will be needed if they are to land silverware this summer.


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