Saturday June 1 2019
Mancini: 'More attacking Italy'

Roberto Mancini warned Greece and Bosnia are “the most dangerous opponents” in the Euro 2020 group, but Italy are moving towards a more attacking style of football.

The Azzurri go into their Euro 2020 qualifiers against Greece on June 8 and Bosnia-Herzegovina on June 11, having picked up full points against Finland and Liechtenstein.

The Champions League Final is this evening between Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur, two very attack-minded teams, while Chelsea beat Arsenal 4-1 to win the Europa League.

“English teams are accustomed to always attacking, even after they’ve taken a strong lead. That is the beauty of their approach and why their games are never over until the final whistle,” said former Manchester City manager Mancini in his Press conference.

“It has always been my own philosophy too, although a lot depends on the type of players at your disposal. At this moment, I am fortunate to have found Italian players with strong technique and this allowed us to play a certain type of football.

“The positives from Serie A compared to a year ago are that we have many more players suitable for the Nazionale. We’ve been able to find around 40 players who can be very important for Italy, among them 15-20 who are still very young.

“The negatives are that our clubs didn’t reach the Finals of the two European competitions. There is a long and tough road ahead, but the lads have already started to gain a positive mentality.

“Over the last year, we’ve seen players really grow and mature, like Nicolò Barella, Nicolò Zaniolo and Moise Kean, who are doing really well to play at their current level. I think it’s a good period for Italian youth, but then our football always does churn out talents.

“This is an important moment, as we need to raise our position in the rankings and qualify for Euro 2020. Greece and Bosnia are the opponents who could cause us the most problems in the group. I am not worried, but we must show the right level of respect for teams that are playing good football.

“I’d say Bosnia are the most dangerous, because they have a couple of players we know very well, such as Miralem Pjanic and Edin Dzeko.”

There are reports Antonio Conte has asked Lele Oriali to join him at Inter, which would mean leaving his current role as team manager for Italy.

“I hope he doesn’t leave, as we’ve formed a good group here now. I don’t think he has made any decision yet,” added Mancini.

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