Roberto Mancini is the hero of Italy right now and his success has been an inspiration for others to emulate. From the darkest periods, he has brought Italy back to light and now, yet again, they are right at the top of European Football, but Mancini is a dreamer and wishes to reach higher and earn the accolades of the coach of a World Champion team.
RAI 1, Italy’s national broadcaster, have aired a documentary ‘Sogno Azzurro’ that covers Italy’s Euro 2020 success, and one of the more interesting points came from the hours leading up to Spain semi-final, particularly for those interested in Spanish football.
“You can’t always win by controlling a game,” Mancini told his players leading up to the semi-final.
“It’s what we’d like, but there are the opponents as well.”
“If you have to, wait. Let them play. Stay calm.”
“Spain have a great squad. You’ll see at the World Cup that it’ll be between us, them and maybe another team. They’ve very good players – young, but very good.”
“It won’t be easy, we’ll have to suffer until the end but, as always, we’ll try to do it together.”
Behind the scenes documentary Sogno Azzurro on RAI 1 showed the footage of the team’s reaction after Spinazzola pulled up during the quarter-final with Belgium.
It was immediately apparent that this was a very serious injury when he suddenly stopped mid-sprint and collapsed in tears.
He was diagnosed with a torn Achilles tendon and had surgery within 48 hours of the match, ruling him out for six to nine months.
“Spina was the best full-back in Euros, he was a fundamental player for his strength, his pace, his technique, and he didn’t deserve this serious injury during such an important game,” Mancini told the documentary crew.
“It was a difficult moment for all of us and now we have something more to make us want to win this Euros, to do it for him, as right now he cannot do anything more for the team.”
The footage of Spinazzola being hugged and saluted by all his teammates was already shown by the Azzurri social media channels, but they cut out what the Roma left-back said as he hobbled away on his crutches.
“Let’s go and lift the trophy with crutches. Juuuust perfect…”