Spalletti laments Italy attacking bravery despite Euro 2024 opening win

By Sports Desk June 15, 2024

Luciano Spalletti warned Italy must show more intent to attack despite their 2-1 comeback victory over Albania in Saturday's Euro 2024 victory.

Italy won their opening match at the European Championships for a third straight time (also in 2016 and 2020 editions), after doing so only twice in their first eight such appearances (D5 L1).

The Azzurri needed a fightback performance, however, after falling behind Nedim Bajrami's thumping strike after 23 seconds for Albania against Italy, the fastest goal ever scored in Euros history.

Alessandro Bastoni headed level soon after, though, before Nicolo Barella's 10th international goal proved the difference to send Italy level on points with Spain at the top of Group B.

Yet Spalletti was far from impressed with parts of Italy's game despite the Azzurri becoming just the third side to score in 10 successive Euros outings, after England in 2012 (11) and Portugal in 2004 (10).

"We saw many good things, but they need to actually take us somewhere, otherwise they are pointless," the Italy head coach told RAI Sport.

"There was the possibility to hurt them several times and we didn't go for it.

"We prepared the move well, then passed it backwards. We changed our minds too quickly."

Barella was a doubt after missing both warm-up friendlies but returned with vengeance to guide his side to victory.

Spalletti grew frustrated when asked if Italy are reliant on midfield maestro Barella, however.

"A national team must be able to do without anyone, because there are 26 strong players," Spalletti responded to questioning over the Inter star's influence.

"I don't like this idea that the team depends on an individual."

Barella, meanwhile, was delighted with Italy's response to Albania's record-breaking opener.

"It was a bit of a strange start, an opening goal after 23 seconds could really hurt the players psychologically," Barella told Sky Sport Italia.

"However, we wanted this victory, we should've scored more goals and fell away a bit at the end, but we started on the right foot with this win."

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