Tuesday June 16 2015
Sansone: 'A bitter debut'

Sassuolo striker Nicola Sansone made his senior Italy debut in a defeat to Portugal, but remains confident.

“I am happy for the debut, not with the result, as we were hoping for a victory,” he told Rai Sport following a 1-0 friendly loss.

“Tactics count to a certain degree, it’s more about determination. We tried every way to win and didn’t manage it.

“I don’t think Portugal are superior to us. Before the game (Antonio) Conte told us we had to win. He didn’t say anything afterwards.”

Italy needed a victory to become seeds for the 2018 World Cup qualifying draw at the end of July.

As they lost, the Nazionale could end up with the likes of Germany or Holland in their group. Only the top team goes through, the second has to qualify via a play-off.

“We did know and discussed that before the match, so we are disappointed with that. We are strong too and will be able to qualify for the World Cup anyway.”

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