Spalletti demands more from Italy despite Euro 2024 opening win

Italy secured a narrow 2-1 victory over Albania in their Euro 2024 opener, but coach Luciano Spalletti wasn’t entirely satisfied with the performance.

Despite conceding the fastest goal in the tournament’s history after just 23 seconds, Italy fought back with goals from Alessandro Bastoni and Nicolo Barella. The win puts them level on points with Group B leaders Spain.

Spalletti acknowledged positive aspects of the performance in Dortmund, especially the quick response to the early setback. However, he was critical of his team’s approach in the second half.

“We saw lots of good play out there but it has to get you somewhere, because if it doesn’t it’s no use to anyone,” Spalletti told Italian broadcaster RAI. “We had lots of opportunities to do Albania damage. We worked on moves and how to get at their defence but we kept turning backwards.

“You need to see whether you’ve created the space in which you can have a chance at goal. If not, you can change your mind but we kept changing our minds too quickly.

“Sometimes it’s easy to get comfortable in how you’re playing but instead you need to be aggressive, hungry to create more and try to score that extra goal.”

Italy now face Spain, who thrashed Croatia 3-0, in Gelsenkirchen on Thursday. A point against the group leaders could be enough to secure a place in the knockout stages.

(Source: AFP)

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