Italy saw off Uruguay 3-0 in a Nice friendly thanks to a spectacular Jose Maria Gimenez own goal, Eder header and Daniele De Rossi penalty.
This was the first victory over the South Americans in 90 minutes since the 1990 World Cup.
Giampiero Ventura continued to test his 4-2-4 system, although Marco Verratti was among those ruled out by injury. Claudio Marchisio made his comeback for Italy after 17 months, Gianluigi Donnarumma received his second start and it was the first for Atalanta left-back Leonardo Spinazzola. Uruguay missed Luis Suarez, Edinson Cavani and Diego Godin at the Allianz Riviera in Nice.
It took just seven minutes to break the deadlock, as Lorenzo Insigne’s long ball was knocked back by Andrea Belotti, but in his attempt to intercept, Jose Maria Gimenez instead smashed it into his own net from the edge of the box, leaving Fernando Muslera stunned.
Muslera flew to fingertip an Insigne curler out from under the bar, but Marchisio pulled up with a muscular problem and had to make way for Riccardo Montolivo.
Belotti failed to make the most of a counter-attack and Matteo Darmian’s mazy run was closed off with some difficulty, while Insigne blasted wide after a give-and-go with Ciro Immobile.
The Lazio striker was booked for dissent after going down between two defenders, but Martin Caceres appeared to get the ball just before he was tripped.
Moments later, Immobile saw his shot deflected wide from nine yards by a desperate Matias Vecino sliding block. Antonio Candreva aimed a cross-shot off target on the stroke of half-time.
Caceres thought he had equalised with a towering header into the bottom corner from a free kick, but it was disallowed for a shove on Montolivo. This game had VAR (Video Assistant Referee) technology and those behind the monitors opted to back the decision, which was a little soft.
Andrea Barzagli was furious with Nahitan Nandez for a late tackle on the back of his ankle, warranting a yellow card for the Uruguayan.
Eder’s snapshot was charged down, then he nodded wide at the back post from a strong Leonardo Spinazzola cross. Stephan El Shaarawy charged on to a defensive error, rode a tackle and his curler was fingertipped out of the far bottom corner by Muslera.
Italy doubled their lead thanks to an impact substitution. Within 30 seconds of coming off the bench, Manolo Gabbiadini had drawn Muslera out and tried to curl in from a very tight angle, but instead it found Eder for a glancing header from point-blank range. VAR confirmed the Inter striker was not offside.
A Montolivo snapshot was deflected just wide by Sebastian Coates, leaving the goalkeeper stranded.
In stoppages, Gimenez completed his nightmare game by scything down El Shaarawy for a penalty, which De Rossi converted.
Italy 3-0 Uruguay
Gimenez og 7 (I), Eder 83 (I), De Rossi pen 91 (I)
Italy: Donnarumma; D’Ambrosio, Barzagli (Chiellini 78), Bonucci, Spinazzola; Marchisio (Montolivo 18), De Rossi; Candreva (Bernardeschi 57), Immobile (Gabbiadini 82), Belotti (Eder 46), Insigne (El Shaarawy 64)
Uruguay: Muslera; Maxi Pereira (Corujo 82), Gimenez, Coates, Caceres; Sanchez (Stuani 46), Nandez, Vecino, Gonzalez; Urretaviscaya, Rolan (A Silva 72)
Ref: Turpin (FRA)
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