Roberto Mancini sees similarities between Greece and Italy ahead of their Euro 2020 qualifier. “We must play to win, not be afraid of losing, and never again fail to qualify.”
The Azzurri continue their Euro 2020 qualifiers by visiting Greece on Saturday, then hosting Bosnia-Herzegovina on June 11.
“We can’t change the past, but of course everyone was disappointed not to qualify for the 2018 World Cup and it hadn’t happened in 60 years,” said the CT in his Press conference.
“We must ensure it never happens again. Italy cannot fail to participate in the European Championship and World Cup, so that’s added motivation.”
So far, the Nazionale crushed Finland and Liechtenstein, but Mancini admits Greece are a very different prospect.
“We don’t know how they will play yet, as they had two different systems in their last two games, so are versatile. We are working on a certain type of mentality that we need to adopt.
“It’s not going to be easy, as in recent months Greece have been playing good football and have a high level of technique. They changed quite a few things at the end of an era and that takes time, so they’re in a similar situation to ours.
“There are a few young players who haven’t featured much in Europe, but they’re still experienced and know what to do. That aspect doesn’t worry me.
“We must continue playing with the usual mentality and have found a certain consistency in our style of football too. We want to get out there seeking a win, every time, not be afraid of losing. We are the Italian Nazionale, even if we’re coming off a difficult time.
“Greece and Bosnia represent the toughest games in the group, but we intend to push on.”
Mancini has been performing some experiments in attack during training this week, using anyone from Andrea Belotti and Ciro Immobile to Gianluca Lapadula and even Federico Bernardeschi as centre-forwards.
“We still have a few hours to decide and some won’t even be on the bench, as we have five centre-forwards in the squad and another game coming up in three days.
“We are working to have around 30 players who are interchangeable, because the team will maintain the same identity and style of football.”