Sports

Sweden and Italy gear up for World Cup playoff clash

Sweden and Italy gear up for World Cup playoff clash

Italy's streak of 14 consecutive World Cup appearances is snapped.

Three quick thoughts from Italy's 0-0 draw with Sweden in the second leg of their World Cup qualifying playoff that sees the Swedes qualify for next summer's World Cup in Russian Federation.

The legendary goalkeeper had previously indicated his intent to step away from the Azzurri following the tournament in Russian Federation, but Italy were eliminated from contention for the World Cup with a 0-0 second-leg draw with Sweden, who advanced on aggregate following a 1-0 win in the first leg. There's regret at finishing like that, not because time passes. We are all guilty and responsible for that: "football is like that".

"We did not underestimate anything, because those who played in these games knows what it means to face these sides, how hard it is to overcome a 1-0 deficit psychologically too".

Italy last failed to qualify for WC in 1958.

Gian Piero Ventura will surely need to make some modifications to his lineup after such a poor performance in Stockholm.

Sweden were rated nearly no chance of progressing to the finals, but the 25th-ranked team progressed to the play-off on goal difference, finishing second in their group ahead of the Netherlands and four points behind France.

But Giampiero Ventura's players couldn't breach a resolute Sweden defence, indeed they struggled to create any meaningful chances as they were bounced out of the World Cup finals.

And now we have the catalogue of penalty appeals during this Italy-Sweden clash, all of which were overruled by Lahoz.

"We are not stressed, personally I am focused on the game and I hope fans will support us". Immbobile beat Olsen with another but Andreas Granqvist got back for a decisive goal-line clearance.

What TV channel is Italy vs Sweden on?

Trailing 1-0 on aggregate to a Jakob Johansson goal scored in Friday's first leg in Stockholm, Giampiero Ventura's Azzurri were cheered on by nearly 72,000 Italian fans in Milan. Ireland take on Denmark in Dublin on Tuesday, with the tie finely poised at 0-0 after the teams' draw in Copenhagen on Saturday.


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