OVERSEAS FOOTBALL : Italy's critics goad Sacchi
Monday 27 March 1995
Second place in the section will almost certainly guarantee participation in next year's finals in England - but the Italians cannot take even that for granted. The formidable Croatian side, who beat Ukraine 4-0 in Zagreb on Saturday, head the group with maximum points from four games. Italy are five points adrift in second place - and Lithuania are one point behind with a game in hand.
"Italy wake up after the jeers," read the headline in La Repubblica yesterday. The Italians struggled and were booed by the crowd until Parma's Gianfranco Zola put them ahead just before half-time with his first international goal. The Milan midfielder, Demetrio Albertini, Zola, and the debutant striker Fabrizio Ravanelli, from Juventus, added further strikes for Italy in the second half before Estonia scored their first goal of the qualifying campaign through their substitute, Martin Reim.
"Clearly some journalists are used to seeing such great league matches that the national team pales by comparison," Sacchi, who promised to make changes in Kiev, said. "I don't think I would have read the same things if an Italian club had won 4-1 in a European match."
Croatia, who beat the Italians 2-1 in Palermo last November, could have doubled their tally against Ukraine. Davor Suker, the Seville striker, scored twice, with Milan's Zvonimir Boban and Robert Prosinecki, from the penalty spot, also on target for the former Yugoslav republic, who face Lithuania in Vilnius on Wednesday. "Croatia are the European team who have made the biggest leap in the Fifa rankings and they have a lot of very good players," Sacchi said.
n The midfielder Paul Le Guen, of Paris St-Germain, will take over from the suspended Eric Cantona as the captain of France for their European Championship qualifier against Israel in Tel Aviv on Wednesday.
Dennis Rodman will coach the North Korea basketball team
Jennifer Lawrence attacks mass media again over body image
Latest in Sport
Arsenal can surprise Bayern Munich in the Champions League, says former midfielder Gilberto Silva
Liverpool - January transfer targets
Transfer news: Liverpool - January transfer targets
Transfer news: Manchester United - January transfer targets
Transfer news: Arsenal - Transfer targets for January
- 1 America's 'virgin births'? One in 200 mothers 'became pregnant without having sex'
- 2 Sun will 'flip upside down' within weeks, says Nasa
- 3 Christmas comes early: Justin Bieber is 'retiring from music'
- 4 Iain Duncan Smith leaves Commons food banks debate early
- 5 Children evacuated from swimming pool after prosthetic leg mistaken for paedophile
Exclusive: Young people ‘want UK to stay in Europe’: Four in 10 adults aged 18 to 24 are ‘firmly in favour’ of membership, poll shows
You can STILL be jailed for being a republican, government confirms, and it remains illegal to even 'imagine' overthrowing the Queen
Tom Daley ‘is gay because his father died’ says UK evangelist
Kiss and yell: Italian protester charged with sexual assault after kissing riot police officer
Fighting back: the woman giving a voice (and 49,999 others) to the victims of sexism - by giving an airing to their horror stories
PM denies two child limit for benefits is part of Tory welfare policy
£500 - £550 per day: Cornwallis Elt : Business Analyst Target Operating Mod...
£10 - £12 per hour: Pro-Recruitment Group: An opportunity has arisen within th...
Flexible, Competitive, Weekly.: Randstad Education Cambridge: The JobRandstad ...
£9600 - £14400 per annum: Randstad Education Cambridge: Randstad Education are...