By Chris King • 06 July 2021 • 20:29
SPAIN and Italy team news ahead of the semi-final at Wembley Stadium
Spain and Italy face off at Wembley Stadium this evening, Tuesday 6, just that one step away from Sunday’s final versus England or Denmark, but it’s a huge step they both have to make.
Italy, as expected, are without their injured 28-year-old wing-back Leonardo Spinazzola, who ruptured his Achilles tendon in the quarter-final against Belgium, so he has been replaced by Roberto Mancini with Chelsea’s Emerson, but the Azzuri will surely miss the attacking flair of Spinazzola, who at times was like having an extra attacker on the field.
In the Spain camp, there is a huge shock, as Atletico’s Alvaro Morata is benched, Gerard Moreno of Villarreal being overlooked, and coach Luis Enrique going in favour of the Real Sociedad forward Oyarzabal, with the other two forwards guilty of a hatful of missed opportunities during the tournament so far, and statistically, Morata and Moreno, rank first and second for the most chances missed at Euro 2020, with six and five respectively.
Having said that, Spain are currently the top scorers at Euro 2020, after twice hitting five goals, against Slovakia and Croatia, but a lack of ruthlessness in the final third has been a recurring issue.
Oyarzabal impressed whenever he came on as a substitute, and was the player who hit the winning penalty in the shoot-out victory over Switzerland, and in midfield, Spain have the formidable combination of Barcelona veteran Sergio Busquets, Barcelona’s young prodigy, Pedri and Atletico Madrid captain, Koke, none of whom, remarkably, have scored a goal in Euro 2020 yet.
Italy’s midfield, on the other hand, has Manuel Locatelli, and Matteo Pessina from Atalanta, who have both scored twice, while Inter Milan’s Nicolo Barella has also found the net.
Italian sports publication, Gazzetta dello Sport, wrote prior to this match, “High pressing, pace and midfielders taking control of the game”.
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Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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