Match: Italy – Bulgaria
Date: Sunday, 6th September 2015
Start time: 7:45 pm
After the defeat from Norway at home, Bulgaria visits Italy in match of the eighth round of the qualifying group “H” for Euro 2016. The game is on Sunday at 19:45 GMT local at “Stadio Renzo Barbera” in Palermo.
Italy tied on points with group leaders Croatia after win over Malta with minimum 1:0. So both teams have 15 points, while Norway is third with 13 points. Bulgaria does stay with 8 points and is illusory chances for the finals in France next year.
Success against Malta in Florence was made very difficult. “The Blues” reached only goal in the 69th minute by Graziano Pelle. His partner in attack Eder and Gabiadini played a mediocre game the second was replaced by Kandreva in the 65th minute. But the truth is that Antonio Conte has no stars in the attack, as was previously the Italian team. Against Bulgaria he can count more of Simone Zaza and Ciro Immobile. Outside the expected composition remained Mario Balotelli and Dani Osvaldo. They are far from the desired physical shape and will need to improve their game if they want to participate in the finals in France.
Against Malta Conte tried new scheme. He bet on the 4-3-3 as Darmian and Pascual acted as full-backs. Usually the “Azzurri” play with a 3-5-2, but Conte was convenient rival against which it can experiment.
Bulgaria lost as host of Norway 0:1 and needs a miracle to qualify any of the first three places. National team behind 5 points from Norway and 7 from Italy and Croatia. Bulgaria once again squandered a golden opportunity after playing outrageously poor game of national stadium “Vasil Levski” and disappoint the people in the stands. “The Vikings” We beat both tactically and physically, but it is hardly a surprise, after the majority of the holders of Ivaylo Petev have reserves in their clubs.
Petev make only one change in its composition compared with those who beat Malta 1:0 in June. Ivaylo Chochev started in midfield in place of Vladimir Gadzhev. In attack “lions” had no idea how to score. This time there was Ivelin Popov day and failed to create something to win a point or three. Mitsanski, Manolev as reserves Tonev, Nedelev and Rangel did not show anything that deserve to wear the national jersey. Georgi Milanov and Chochev also did nothing in the creative plan.
Ivaylo Petev has two days to try to ensure that his chosen players to show better against the “squadra Azzurri” in Palermo. Is it possible we’ll know on Sunday evening.
During his last visit to Italy, Bulgaria lost 0:1. It was in 2013 in a World Cup qualifier. Italy have won their last 3 home matches against Bulgaria in all competitions.
Italy not play perfect in these qualifications, but still very close to ranking ahead of Euro 2016. “squadra” has ten goals in 7 games, which brought them 15 points. The attack team limps, but good play in defense helped them win their matches. In the upcoming match expect hosts to record a new economical success. I doubt that Bulgaria will be managed to score goal in the door of Buffon and I do not think we will see more than two goals in the game.