Italy will be aiming to stamp their marker down on second spot in the Euro Qualifiers over in Group C with the reigning champions of Europe sitting alongside Ukraine and North Macedonia on seven points before playing Malta.
Italy have had a rough ride since winning the Euros back in 2021. The four-time champions of the world failed to qualify for the World Cup soon after and consequently became the first nation in European history to win the Euros and fail to qualify for the forthcoming World Cup. During this period, Italy played out a 3-1 win over Albania and a 2-0 victory over Austria. They then, however, went on to lose in their first European qualifier with England, as the Three Lions beat them 2-1 in Rome two years on from suffering a loss in the Euro 2020 final to Italy.
Italy would then go on to beat Malta soon after in a 2-0 victory, as Mateo Retegui scored in the first half before a goal from Matteo Pessina. A loss in the semi-finals of the Nations League would follow, as Ciro Immobile equalised in the first half from the penalty spot before a late winner from Joselu. The Netherlands was up next in a third-placed playoff as a result of that semi-final loss, and the European champions went 2-0 up inside the first 20 minutes with a goal from Federico Dimarco and David Frattesi.
Back in the Euro Qualifiers, Italy returned with a 1-1 draw against North Macedonia before defeating Ukraine 2-1. Their run in the Nations League also means they have a game in hand to work with in Group C, which will come in handy given how they are level on points with North Macedonia and Ukraine.
As for Malta, predictably, they are winless in Group C and have scored just one goal from their five defeats from five games. This has seen the nation also score just 11 at the same time, and this now means only Gibraltar, Liechtenstein and San Marino have a worse record than them this qualifying campaign.
Malta's only goal was against North Macedonia, as Yannick Yankam scored late on in the second half from what was just one of two shots on target for them.
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