Italy take on Spain in the first semifinal Euro 2020 at Wembley, with England-Denmark tomorrow. The Italians have looked the best side of the tournament, and after a slow start (likely due to missing players and trainings due to COVID-19 isolation), the Spanish look every bit the side that had them among the pre-tournament favorites.
Spain’s results against Slovakia and Croatia speak for themselves — any side that can score five goals in consecutive matches at a major tournament is impressive. And even though I’ve said “don’t sleep on Spain” publicly, I’m not fully convinced that they’re an elite squad. They struggled to assert themselves against a Granit Xhaka-less Switzerland team that was playing a man down for half the second half and all of extra time.
As strange is it is to say about the country that has scored the most goals of any in the tournament, I’m not sure where Spain’s chances and goals will come from against Italy. I don’t think they’ve played a midfield or defense as formidable as the Italians’ have managed this tournament. The Spanish midfield is very good, but I think the Italian midfield is better, and I suspect Spain will struggle to have the meaningful possession they’ve enjoyed all tournament.
The biggest question mark for Italy is how much the loss of Leonardo Spinazzola to an Achilles injury will hurt their setup. His replacement, Emerson, is solid, but not nearly as dynamic of a player. Beyond that, I think Italy have the edge pretty much all over the pitch.
I think Italy will win rather comfortably today. They’re that good.
Italy - Donnarumma, Di Lorenzo, Bonnucci, Chiellini, Emerson, Barella, Jorghinho, Verratti, Chiesa, Immobile, Insigne
Spain - Unai Simon, Jordi Alba, Laporte, Eric Garcia, Azpilicueta, Pedri, Sergio Busquets, Koko, Olmo, Oyarzabal, Ferran Torres
OFICIAL | ¡¡TENEMOS LA ALINEACIÓN INICIAL PARA LAS SEMIS!!— Selección Española de Fútbol (@SeFutbol) July 6, 2021
Estos son los once jugadores elegidos por @LUISENRIQUE21 para este derbi mediterráneo por un billete en la final de la #EURO2020.
¿ESTÁIS LISTOS, AFICIÓN? ¡¡VAMOOOOOS!!
#ITA - #ESP #SomosEspaña pic.twitter.com/Oi4dyDPdvv
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