Follow the countdown. only missing 242 days for the start of Qatar 2022 World Cup and there are fewer and fewer places available. The most exciting tournament in the world already has 15 qualified countries and there are still 17 participants to be defined. Several places with important and renowned candidates. Such is the case of Italya historic selection that still could not guarantee its presence.
There is less to go to the most anticipated Cup. Photo: EFE.
The Azzura was expelled from Russia 2018 and you don’t want to miss the train anymore. For this reason, he will aim all his weapons at the only rank line remaining at his disposal: the playoffs. The Italians will have to measure up to North Macedoniaand if they win, they will face the winner Portugal – Turkey.
Italy: from victory at the Euro to the playoffs. Photo: EFE.
WHEN DO ITALY-NORTH MACEDONIA PLAY?
The duel for the UEFA qualifiers will take place this Thursday from 4:45 p.m. (Argentina time). It will be played in Sicily, and it will be at the same time as the other qualifying rounds of the European Qualifiers.
WHERE TO SEE ITALY – NORTH MACEDONIA?
The meeting will be broadcast on the screens of ESPN and Star+. Also, as usual, you can follow minute by minute by Olé.
It will be played in the house of Palermo.
HOW DOES ITALY DO THIS?
Until a few months ago, the Azzurri stood out as one of the candidates for the Qatar Cup. They had reinvented themselves under the orders of Robert Mancini, who took over in 2018, after his country was excluded from the World Cup in Russia. The coach renewed the squad, changed the mentality of the team and started a new era in the selection.
Italy does not want surprises. Photo: AFP.
With a new style, Mancini embarked on a historic unbeaten streak, reached 37 matches without falls, world record. In addition, in the middle he became champion of the European Championship and reached the semifinals of the Nations League. Thus, Italy presented itself as one of the favorites of Qatar. But all that glitters is not gold, because the format of the UEFA qualifiers He tricked him and now his participation in the World Cup is in jeopardy.
Italy were doing well – very well – in the qualifying process. In reality, He completed it without suffering any fall. But even that was not enough to complete his ticket to the Middle East. He was in second position, behind Switzerland, who also did not lose a match and accumulated two more points. The Azzurra reached the last date as a leader. But he had an accident: he drew against Northern Ireland and fell in the playoffs.
HOW TO GET THERE FROM NORTH MACEDONIA?
It’s clear that they are not the favorites of the series, but they should not be underestimated. The Balkan country has already shown time and time again that it can surprise and strike against powerful teams: just like it did when it beat Germany 2-1, adding three key points which earned it a place in the playoff zone.
Macedonia have made history and will be in the playoffs. Photo: EFE.
The Lynxes will be visitors to the Palermo pitch – which will have 100% capacity – where they will be looking to hit the ground running. The national team founded in 1994 (until 1991 the country was part of Yugoslavia) dreams of participating in a World Cup for the first time. Basically, this is the first time they have reached the playoff stage, until then they had always remained in the group stage.
Macedonia dreams of Qatar. Photo: AFP.
Macedonia dreams and dreams big. It matters little to him that the value of his selection is 13 times cheaper (856 million euros against 64 million). He doesn’t care about history, that he could never beat his rival (one was 3-2 for Italy and the other tied 1-1), nor that they won’t have Pandev, their legendary star who retired from the national team. Those from the East will appear in Sicily to show their faces and fight for their World Cup dream.
The celebration after entering the repechage. Photo: Reuters
Italy: Donnarumma; Florenzi, Mancini, Bastoni or Chiellini, Emerson; Barella, Jorginho, Verratti; Badge, Immobile and Berardi.
North Macedonia: Dimitrievsky; Ristovsky, Velkovski, Musliu, Alioski; Churlinov, Spirovski, Bardhi, Ademi, Ethemi and Trajkovski.