Two of the biggest names in international football, Italy and Spain will collide at Wembley in the first Euro 2020 semi-final tie on Tuesday July 6.
Italy has lived up to the tag as one of tournament’s favorites before the start of this summer’s European Championship.
The Azzurris marched into the last 16, brushing aside Turkey, Switzerland and Wales in the opening group stage fixtures before surviving an Austrian scare to leave it late to the quarters of Euro 2020.
Roberto Mancini’s side prevailed with a 2-1 win over Belgium in the quarter-finals, setting a new national record in the process as they extended their unbeaten run to 32 games and their winning streak to 13 wins in a row.
Spain begun their campaign as slow and unpredictable starters, drawing against Sweden and Poland in the group stage, but their fortunes changed in front of goal by scoring 5 past Slovakia and then Croatia in the last-16.
La Roja then survived a 10-man Swiss scare to beat them 3-2 on penalties in the Euro 2020 quarterfinals.
The two traditional heavyweights Italy and Spain clash again for all the spoils for the fourth consecutive Euros, in the 2020 semi-finals in London on Tuesday 6 July at 7pm.
Spain thumped Italy 4-0 in the final of UEFA EURO 2012, but Italy retaliated in the 2016 round of 16 eliminating La Roja with a 2-0 win.
Italy will be without left-back and key attacking outlet Leonardo Spinazzola who ruptured his Achilles tendon against Belgium and left the field in tears on a stretcher.
Giorgio Chiellini returned from injury against Belgium and will continue alongside Leonardo Bonucci at the back. Italy have no suspension concerns. Lorenzo Pellegrini and Stefano Sensi were ruled out before the start of the tournament.
Spain has no or little injury with only long-term injury absentee being Ansu Fati.
Italian Strikers Ciro Immobile and Lorenzo Insigne are the players to watch in this blistering encounter whiles Spain striker Alvaro Morata is expected to turn things around after a rocky start.
Meetings total 37
Most wins Italy (11) Spain (11)
All-time series Italy: 11 Draw: 15 Spain: 11
Spain are looking for a fourth European title, the Azzurris have participated in eleven European Championships (with a currently ongoing tournament in 2020), from which they won three titles – 1984 , 2008 and 2012.
Italy have surprisingly only won the Euros once, all the way back in 1968.
Euro 2020: Match Details
Semifinals: Italy vs Spain
Date: 6th July
Venue: Wembley Stadium, London, England
Kick-off time: 7:00 PM
Acknowledgement : Betway Ghana (Headline Sponsor)
Mark F. | SilverFM