Italy Under-21 Coach Ciro Ferrara has warned his players to “not fall for provocation” against Turkey tomorrow.
The Azzurrini have struggled so far this season with avoidable red cards, though they have nine points from three games and trail Turkey with their 12 points from five matches in Group 7.
“It would be nice to repeat the great performance of a month ago,” said Ferrara of that 2-0 victory over Turkey.
“Aside from the first 10 minutes, which we approached with a little too much respect for a side coming off four consecutive wins, for the rest Italy dominated the game and put Turkey under pressure.
“When we had to defend ourselves, we did it the right way. Tomorrow we go into a game that is in some ways very similar, but also very different, as we’re away from home and the fans will be behind Turkey.
“We have to step on to the field convinced of our abilities and play without waiting for events to happen. These are matches that have to be prepared from a psychological point of view. The lads know how important it is and the objective in front of us. They realise this is a head-to-head battle for the top of the group.”
Fabio Borini, Manolo Gabbiadini and Lorenzo Insigne are all suspended, so there must be changes.
“I always said I have many talented options, especially in attack. I have faith in those at my disposal, as they already proved their worth with facts.
“However, we do have to be very wary of provocation, as we absolutely must not repeat the mistake of the last meeting when we lost players during the game.
“We must prove that we have the character to succeed, especially in a difficult and fiery atmosphere like Istanbul.”
The match kicks off at the Kasimpasa Erdogan Stadium at 16.00 UK time.
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