After World Cup failure, Italy perfect in Euro 2020 run-up
ROME (AP) — Nearly two years after Italy's embarrassing failure to qualify for the World Cup, the Azzurri are back on track.
With six straight wins to open European Championship qualifying,...
Pukki scores again but Italy stays perfect in Finland
TAMPERE, Finland (AP) — Italy benefited from a generous hand ball decision and converted a late penalty for a 2-1 win at Finland to extend its perfect start to European Championship qualifying on...
Italy struggles to beat 10-man Armenia 3-1 in Euro qualifier
YEREVAN, Armenia (AP) — Injury-depleted Italy required two late goals to secure a 3-1 win over 10-man Armenia on Thursday and extend its perfect start to European Championship...
Mancini: Balotelli can rejoin Italy if he scores 25 goals
YEREVAN, Armenia (AP) — Italy coach Roberto Mancini says Mario Balotelli needs to have "a big season" to have any chance of returning to the national team.
Mancini: Kean, Zaniolo demotions will serve for discipline
BOLOGNA, Italy (AP) — Italy coach Roberto Mancini says he demoted Moise Kean and Nicolò Zaniolo to the under-21 squad in a disciplinary lesson.
Pellegrini gets 1st Italy call, Kean and Zaniolo dropped
ROME (AP) — Italy coach Roberto Mancini has included Cagliari defender Luca Pellegrini in his 26-man squad for upcoming European Championship qualifiers against Armenia and Finland.
TURIN, Italy (AP) — Marco Verratti scored a late winner to preserve Italy's perfect record in qualifying for the 2020 European Championship with a 2-1 win over Bosnia-Herzegovina on...
ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Italy's new attack-minded approach continues to pay off as the Azzurri beat Greece 3-0 on Saturday to move three points clear at the top of their 2020 European Championship...
ROME (AP) — Three players born in 2001 and a handful yet to appear in Serie A have been called up for a training camp with Italy's national team.
PARMA, Italy (AP) — Veteran forward Fabio Quagliarella became the oldest player to score for Italy as he converted two penalties to help the Azzurri beat 10-man Liechtenstein 6-0 on Tuesday in...
Italy and Spain both made easy work of low-ranked opposition on Tuesday as the two former European champions try to build some momentum after a disappointing year.
FLORENCE, Italy (AP) — Nicolo Zaniolo had not played a match in Italy's top flight less than a year ago but could make his first appearance for Italy this week.
Italy call-up but no record for Quagliarella
MILAN (AP) — There was to be no record for veteran forward Fabio Quagliarella at the weekend but plenty of plaudits and an Italy call-up to boot.
Having matched Gabriel Batistuta's 1994 feat of finding the net in 11 consecutive Serie A appearances, Quagliarella was looking to set a new record when his Sampdoria side faced his hometown club and former team, Napoli — two days after he turned 36.
Italy coach curious to see what Tonali and Co can do
GENK, Belgium (AP) — Italian teenager Sandro Tonali could become the first player born in the millennium to play for the Azzurri on Tuesday in a friendly against the United States.
The hype around Tonal has labeled the 18-year-old midfielder the next Andrea Pirlo.
Tonali has never played in the Italian top flight, and made his professional debut only 14 months ago for Serie B side Brescia, but has impressed sufficiently to be summoned by the national side.
Mancini wants to ‘bring Italy back where it belongs’
MILAN (AP) — A year after its stunning elimination by Sweden in a World Cup playoff, Italy is back at the San Siro stadium for another potentially decisive match.
The Azzurri have to beat Cristiano Ronaldo-less Portugal on Saturday and then hope the European champion does not defeat Poland three days later in order to reach the UEFA Nations League finals.
Balotelli left out of Italy squad for Portugal and US games
ROME (AP) — Mario Balotelli has again been left out of the Italy squad, this time for matches against Portugal and the United States.
Balotelli was included in Roberto Mancini's first two squads as coach and played his first matches for Italy since the 2014 World Cup, but the Nice forward was left out last month and was again excluded on Friday.
Italy leaves it late to earn 1st competitive win in a year
ROME (AP) — Italy is finally showing signs of emerging from its crisis, nearly a year after failing to qualify for the World Cup.
Cristiano Biraghi's goal in stoppage time earned the Azzurri a much-needed 1-0 win in Poland on Sunday in the UEFA Nations League.
Playing in Group 3 of League A, Poland became the first team to be relegated in the new European competition.
Italy also hit the crossbar twice in the first half, first with Jorginho then with Lorenzo Insigne.
Italy held 1-1 by Ukraine as winless streak reaches 5
GENOA, Italy (AP) — Italy's winless streak reached five matches following a 1-1 draw at home with Ukraine in a friendly on Wednesday — extending the Azzurri's poor run of form following their failure to qualify for the World Cup.
Ruslan Malinovskyi equalized seven minutes after Federico Bernardeschi's opener early in the second half.
Giovinco back in Italy squad after 3-year absence
GENOA, Italy (AP) — Sebastian Giovinco is back in the Italy squad after an absence of nearly three years, but Mario Balotelli has been left out.
Italy coach Roberto Mancini included the 31-year-old Toronto FC forward in the 28-man squad he named Friday for upcoming matches against Ukraine and Poland.
Giovinco, who has scored one goal in 23 appearances for Italy, last played for his country on Oct. 15, 2015.
Portugal adds to Italy’s struggles with Nations League win
MADRID (AP) — As Cristiano Ronaldo enjoyed his time off at the French Riviera, his Portugal teammates were busy handing Italy another disappointing result in the UEFA Nations League.
Portugal did not need Ronaldo — who skipped international duty to recharge after a busy summer — to beat Italy 1-0 in Europe's newest soccer competition.
After WCup failure, Italy starts Nations League with a draw
ROME (AP) — Ten months after failing to qualify for the World Cup, Italy still doesn't look World Cup-worthy.
Playing their first competitive match since last year's playoff loss to Sweden, the Azzurri required a late penalty to draw with Poland 1-1 at home on Friday in the UEFA Nations League.
Brazilian-born midfielder Jorginho converted the spot kick after substitute Federico Chiesa earned the penalty for Italy.
Mancini’s training sessions are music to the ears
FLORENCE, Italy (AP) — Italy coach Roberto Mancini is trying something new to motivate his players.
For the first time in Italy training sessions, music is being played from a speaker attached to a mobile phone.
"It's a new thing. I've been here for three years and until now I've only heard it in the changing room," Italy and AC Milan goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma said on Tuesday.
Mancini pleads with Italian clubs to play more Italians
MILAN (AP) — Italy coach Roberto Mancini bemoaned the dearth of Italian players in Serie A as he focuses on youth in his attempt to get the Azzurri back to the top of international football.
The national team is at a low point after missing the World Cup for the first time in nearly six decades.
Chiellini rejoins Italy squad; 17yo Pellegri called up
ROME (AP) — Veteran defender Giorgio Chiellini has rejoined Italy's squad for the opening Nations League matches against Poland and Portugal.
Chiellini had not been included in Italy's squad since a playoff loss to Sweden last year excluded the Azzurri from the World Cup.
Also, 17-year-old Monaco forward Pietro Pellegri was among five players receiving their first callups by coach Roberto Mancini on Saturday.
MILAN (AP) — With the World Cup quarterfinals underway, Italy is left to wonder what might have been.
This is the first World Cup Italy has not participated in for 60 years. The four-time champion failed to qualify after losing a playoff to Sweden in November.
While frustrated Azzurri fans have been left to watch the action at home, Sweden has impressed in Russia and plays England on Saturday for a place in the semifinals.
TURIN, Italy (AP) — The Netherlands scored late to hold 10-man Italy to 1-1 in a friendly in Turin on Monday.
Nathan Ake headed in two minutes from time to cancel out Simone Zaza's opener.
Italy played the final 21 minutes a man down after defender Domenico Criscito was harshly sent off for a poor last-man tackle.
Both teams, which used to be powerhouses of football, failed to qualify for the World Cup and it was not hard to see why.
Zenit St. Petersburg picks Semak as new coach
ST. PETERSBURG, Russia (AP) — Zenit St. Petersburg has named Sergei Semak as its new coach after Roberto Mancini left to take charge of Italy.
Semak played in midfield for Zenit before retiring in 2013 and taking assistant coaching roles with Zenit and then the Russian national team. This season he led FC Ufa to sixth place in the Russian Premier League, the club's best-ever finish, one place behind Zenit.
ST. GALLEN, Switzerland (AP) — Mari Balotelli marked his return to the Italy team with the opening goal as the Azzurri beat Saudi Arabia 2-1 in an international friendly on Monday in Roberto Mancini's first match in charge.
Balotelli, who last played for Italy in the 2014 World Cup, broke the deadlock in the 21st minute and Andrea Belotti doubled his side's advantage before Yahya Al-Shehri pulled one back thanks to two errors in the Italian defense.
FLORENCE, Italy (AP) — Former Italy captain Gianluigi Buffon will still be considered if he wants to return to the national team.
Buffon retired from international soccer in November after Italy lost a World Cup playoff to Sweden, but he recently returned for friendlies.
MILAN (AP) — Mario Balotelli could make his first appearance for Italy in nearly four years after the Nice forward was named in a 30-man squad by new coach Roberto Mancini on Saturday.
Balotelli last played for Italy in the 2014 World Cup, where the Azzurri was eliminated at the group stage. He was called up by Antonio Conte in November of that year but was forced to withdraw from the squad with injury.
ROME (AP) — Italy coach Roberto Mancini plans to talk to long-excluded striker Mario Balotelli about a possible return to the national team as he attempts to rebuild a squad that failed to qualify for the World Cup for the first time in six decades.
Balotelli has not played for Italy since the 2014 World Cup, but he featured under Mancini at both Inter Milan and Manchester City.
Roberto Mancini is Italy coach
ROME (AP) — Roberto Mancini has been confirmed as Italy's new coach.
The Italian football federation made the announcement late Monday, saying Mancini will be introduced on Tuesday but without providing contract details.
Mancini replaces Gian Piero Ventura, who was fired in November after the Azzurri failed to qualify for the World Cup for the first time in six decades.
Luigi Di Biagio guided Italy in an interim role for recent friendlies.
ST. PETERSBURG, Russia (AP) — Roberto Mancini will leave his job as Zenit St. Petersburg coach on Monday ahead of an expected appointment with the Italian national team.
Zenit said in a statement Mancini is leaving "by mutual consent without any compensation payments" after a single, largely unsuccessful, season with the Russian club.
ROME (AP) — The Italian football federation is in talks with Roberto Mancini about taking over the Azzurri's vacant coaching job.
Federation commissioner Roberto Fabbricini told the ANSA news agency that after a meeting Monday, Mancini said he was "open to leaving his job with Zenit St. Petersburg to become head coach of the national team."
ROME (AP) — Zenit Saint Petersburg manager Roberto Mancini is the top candidate to become Italy coach after Carlo Ancelotti reportedly turned down the job.
Mancini tells RAI state radio, "There has not been contact with the (Italian football) federation but, for a coach, the Italian national team would be a source of honor and prestige."
Italian media reported over the weekend that Ancelotti informed the federation he was no longer interested.
ROME (AP) — Italy will face Ukraine and the United States in friendlies later this year.
The Azzurri will meet Ukraine on Oct. 10 — likely at home — and then could play the United States at a neutral ground on Nov. 20.
The Italian federation says match venues will be announced later.
Conte is Italy’s top choice for national coach
MILAN (AP) — Chelsea manager Antonio Conte is Italy's top choice as national coach.
"I haven't chosen yet but I think Conte is the one who could do the best," Italian federation vice commissioner Alessandro Costacurta told Tuesday's Gazzetta dello Sport. "I'll definitely talk with him in a couple of months."
Conte, whose future at Chelsea remains uncertain, already coached Italy to the quarterfinals of the 2016 European Championship before joining the London club.
Italy bosses speak to Mancini about becoming Azzurri coach
ROME (AP) — The Italian soccer federation talked to Roberto Mancini on Friday about the possibility of becoming the next coach of the national team and also plans to approach Chelsea coach Antonio Conte about a possible return.
The 53-year-old Mancini, who has coached Manchester City and Inter Milan, is among several candidates for the role — along with Conte, Carlo Ancelotti and Claudio Ranieri.
MILAN (AP) — For inspiration, Inter Milan would do well to look at its own youth team.
Inter finished seventh in the Italian league last season, while the youngsters won the Primavera league title.
"They brought home a very important result," said Inter coach Luciano Spalletti, speaking for the first time since taking over. "I hope that our guys take a lesson from this success. Normally it is them who look up to us, this time it is us who have to look at them. They do us honor."
ST. PETERSBURG, Russia (AP) — Roberto Mancini has signed a three-year contract to coach Russian club Zenit St. Petersburg.
Mancini described his first job since leaving Inter Milan last August as "a new adventure" in comments on Twitter on Thursday.
"I'm very honored to have been chosen as their coach," he added.
Inter Milan executives express full support for De Boer
MILAN (AP) — Frank de Boer was given the full support of Inter Milan executives on Friday, even though the coach has produced only four wins in the club's opening 10 Serie A matches.
"We're very satisfied with Frank de Boer," club CEO Michael Bolingbroke said after an Inter shareholders meeting. "He accepted to come here at the last minute and it's not an easy situation. We're 100 percent behind him."
Inter draws 1-1 with Palermo in Serie A home opener
ROME (AP) — Inter Milan showed signs of improvement in a 1-1 draw with Palermo on Sunday in its home opener at San Siro.
The Nerazzurri's preparations for Serie A were slowed by the departure of Roberto Mancini less than two weeks before the season started and new manager Frank de Boer had a rough start with a 2-0 loss at Chievo Verona last weekend.