(From our correspondent Massimo Solari) A lesson. Better, a blow. To inflict it on us was Italy, the only true owner of the Olimpico. In Rome it ended 3-0, with Switzerland unjustified absent. What’s more: thanks to Wales’ victory in the late afternoon, the Rossocrociati European Championship got terribly complicated. And, in fact, the test against the selection of Roberto Mancini cannot fail to worry. There was only one team on the pitch. True, beautiful, daring, in the image of the shotgun signed by an arrembante Locatelli. While the Swiss have shot in Donnarumma’s mirror only once. A pittance.
And to say that Switzerland had started the match with the right attitude. Oh my God, two or three minutes of ball possession in the opposing half, some good offensive moves. Yes, that’s right, it was all there in the end. Because then Italy outclassed us, driven by the enthusiasm and quality of its players. One, two steps above all the red crosses. Inaccurate, not very determined, without arguments. Switzerland, on balance, has not built an opportunity. While Italy has even made two goals. The first, by Chiellini (later released due to a physical problem), was canceled in the 20 ‘by the VAR for a touch of the hand of the defender, who had passed like a tank on Akanji and Xhaka. At 26 ‘, however, the Azzurri deservedly found the advantage with Locatelli, able to enter the heart of the area and turn Berardi’s raid on the right into gold. Rodriguez was unwatchable on this occasion. Net of the paucity of the Swiss midfield – with Xhaka subscribed to the passaggino as an end in itself and Freuler invisible – it is on the wards that Switzerland has suffered the pains of hell. We have already said about Rodriguez (bungler even in the rare offensive sorties), but Mbabu also struggled badly in the presence of Spinazzola. Just the latter, like Immobile and Insigne, wasted the doubling shortly after the half hour. While the Swiss continued to understand little or nothing.
Logical, necessary, urgent, to change something at the break. Petkovic, in detail, rejected Seferovic, inserting Gavranovic. Too bad the inertia of the race hasn’t changed at all. On the contrary, the Azzurri immediately exploited the enormous spaces granted by the rossocrociati. And in the 52nd minute, Locatelli went again, free to stop and charge from the edge of the area. Sommer? Defenseless. «Vlado» has therefore changed again: inside Zuber and Widmer, for Schär and Mbabu. But Switzerland, in the short term, did not go beyond Shaqiri’s sixtieth thug. The first real chance for the Swiss came in the 64th minute, with the ball that shot well at the limit of 16 meters before reaching Zuber’s left platter: Donnarumma, unfortunately, said no. A minute later, it was Berardi who fired high from a good position. Shortly after, it was Immobile who imitated him, opening his right plate too much and gracing Switzerland again. Same scene, a few turns of the clock later. One, two, on the third attempt Ciro finally broke free. The Lazio striker, an amen from the ninetieth, pierced Sommer – not very brilliant on the occasion – with a right to the edge of the post. The definitive blow for Switzerland, the apotheosis for the Azzurri.
Goals: 26 ‘Locatelli 1-0, 52’ Locatelli 2-0, 88 ‘Property 3-0.
Arbitro: Karasev (Russia).
Italy: Donnarumma; Di Lorenzo, Bonucci, Chiellini (24 ‘Acerbi), Spinazzola; Locatelli (86 ‘Pessina), Jorginho, Barella (86’ Cristante); Berardi (69 ‘Tolói), Building, Insigne (69’ Church).
Svizzera: Sommer; Elvedi, Schär (57′ Suber), Akanji; Mbabu (57′ Widmer), Xhaka, Freuler (83′ Sow), Rodriguez; Shaqiri (76′ Vargas); Embolo, Seferovic (46′ Gavranovic).
Booked: 49 ‘Gavranovic, 78’ Embolo.
Notes: At 20 ‘the VAR cancels an Italy goal due to Chiellini’s handball.