MATCH checks out all the latest stories ahead of the European Championship taking place this summer!

IN-FORM ITALY!

European giants Italy are one of the hottest teams on the planet right now, so they’re on of the big favourites to land their first major international trophy since the 2006 World Cup!

THEY’RE GONNA WIN IT!

  • They’ve won their last five games in all comps and are on a jaw-dropping 24-game unbeaten run. They’re unstoppable right now!
  • They’ve got an easy-ish draw and get to play all of their group games in Rome!
  • Gaffer Roberto Mancini has combined youth with experience to create a mega exciting team for now and the future!

IT’S NOT GONNA HAPPEN!

  • Quite a lot of their younger players have never played in a major international tournament before!
  • They failed to qualify for World Cup 2018, so there’s loads of pressure on them to perform this time around!
  • Captain Giorgio Chiellini is always injured and vice-captain Leonardo Bonucci is out of form!

ONES TO WATCH!

MATCH has picked out three stars who’ll need to perform if Italy are gonna win this summer’s tournament!

GIANLUIGI DONNARUMMA

The 22-year-old goalkeeper is one of the best in the business, but his penalty-save percentage is the lowest in Serie A since he made his debut back in 2015! The Azurri will be hoping that, if any of their matches go to penalties, he can put that hoodoo to bed!

MARCO VERRATTI

The PSG playmaker is in the peak of his career, so he won’t go into another major international tournament in better shape than this summer! He’s key to Italy’s possession-based style and floats around the pitch in their favourite 4-3-3 formation!

LORENZO INSIGNE

There’s a real tussle between Andrea Belotti and Ciro Immobile to be Italy’s main goal grabber, but one man whose name should definitely be on the team sheet is Insigne’s! The Napoli forward has the talent and ability to be a gamechanger for his nation!