Euro 2020 got underway in fine fashion as Italy cruised to a 3-0 win over Turkey.

Merih Demiral’s own goal followed by Ciro Immobile and Lorenzo Insigne’s calm and collected finishes ensured Roberto Mancini’s men kicked off Group A in top spot. 

The Euro 2020 Opening Ceremony Credit - Andrew Medichini

The opening night of the tournament started as expected as the hostile environment took centre stage with 15,000 fans spread across the Stadio Olimpico in Rome.

The first real chance of the match came in the 17th minute. A quick one-two in the Turkey box freed up space for Lorenzo Insigne to pick his spot but the Italian failed to capitalise, sending it just wide of the post.

In the 20th minute Referee Danny Makkelie was called into action. Ciro Immobile’s strike was seen to have struck the hand of Caglar Soyuncu, however, VAR ruled otherwise much to the dismay of the Italy boss Roberto Mancini.

Minutes later viewers were left on the edge of their seats, witnessing what is sure to be one of the saves of the tournament. A floated corner found Giorgio Chiellini free at the back post who executed an exquisite header, producing a flying save from Ugurcan Cakir who tipped over the bar.

Italy continued to dominate the majority of the first half, pinning the Turks into their own box, however, failed to break down the red wall of Turkish resilience.

Seven minutes after half time Italy had their deserved breakthrough. Domenico Berardi’s driving run down the right was followed by a dangerous cross, striking off the body of Juventus defender Merih Demiral into his own goal.

Ciro Immobile slots away the second of the night. Credit - Football Italia

Just over ten minutes later Italy’s lead was doubled. Another excellent Cakir save from Spinnazola’s volley wasn’t enough as talisman Ciro Immobile was on hand to pounce on the rebound, sending the Italians into the driving seat.

In the 78th minute Turkey’s chances of a revival were dismantled. A quick interchange after Cakir’s poor kickout found Lorenzo Insigne at the back post. With all the time in the world he made no mistake, curling home with ease to send the Azzurri into a three goal lead.

Turkey’s tale of the night was told one minute from time. On the break from Italy’s high press, Burak Yilmaz was denied by a world class block from veteran Giorgio Chiellini, ruling out any chance of a consolation, ensuring a perfect night for the Italians with a clean sheet.

Lorenzo Insigne celebrates his goal and Italy's third of the night. Credit - Europsport

TURKEY

Cakir – 7

Celik – 6

Demiral – 5 (O.G)

Soyuncu – 5

Meras – 6

Yokuslu(65’) – 7

Karaman(76‘) – 6

Tufan(65’) – 7

Yazici(45’) – 6

Calhanoglu – 7

Yilmaz – 6

 

Subs –

Under(45’) – 6

Ayhan(64’) – 6

Kahveci(65’) – 6

Dervisoglu(76’) – 6

ITALY

Donnarumma – 7

Florenzi(45’) – 6.7

Bonucci – 8

Chiellini – 8

Spinazzola – 8

Barella – 7

Jorginho – 9

Locatelli – 8

*Berardi – 10

Immobile – 10

 

Subs-

Di Lorenzo(45’) – 7

Cristante(74’) – 7

Chiesa(81’) – 6

Belotti(81’) – 6

Bernadeschi(85’) – 6

MAN OF THE MATCH- Dominico Berardi –

His power down the right hand side caused problems all night, ultimately ending in the first and second goals from his crosses. Berardi’s pace and work rate means he will be a definite one to watch this summer.

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