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England v Italy – past meetings

England are preparing to continue their historic rivalry with Italy in a friendly at Wembley on Tuesday.

Gareth Southgate
Gareth Southgate

England face Italy at Wembley on Tuesday as they continue their preparations for this summer’s World Cup in Russia.

Here, Press Association Sport takes a look back at some of the most memorable encounters between the two nations.

Italy 1 England 1 – May 13 1933, Rome

Cliff Bastin

Italy was in the grip of fascism when England made their first visit there just over 80 years ago. Playing at the Stadio Nazionale del PNF (National Stadium of the National Fascist Party), Italy got off to a perfect start when Giovanni Ferrari gave the hosts the lead. Arsenal outside left Cliff Bastin equalised with his first international goal to level the friendly match.

Italy 1 England 0 – June 15 1980, Turin

Kevin Keegan

England needed to beat hosts Italy in their final group match to qualify for the second round of the European Championship but with Trevor Francis out through injury, England struggled for goals as Kevin Keegan and Gary Birtles failed to find the net. Marco Tardelli sent Ron Greenwood’s England out of the
tournament with 12 minutes to go.

Italy 0 England 0 – October 11 1997, Rome

Paul Ince

England got the draw they needed to make France ’98 after a tactically astute performance from Glenn Hoddle’s men at the Stadio Olimpico, which contained over 81,000 fans. Ian Wright almost gave England the lead when he rounded the goalkeeper, but hit a post. Angelo Di Livio was sent off and Christian Vieri came within inches of scoring in an action-packed yet scoreless draw. Paul Ince, wearing a bloodied head-bandage, epitomised England’s fighting spirit.

England 0 Italy 0 (Italy win 4-2 on penalties) – June 24 2012, Kiev

Steven Gerrard

Roy Hodgson tasted tournament defeat for the first time with England two years ago as the Three Lions lost their sixth competitive penalty shootout. England rode their luck in the first 90 minutes, with Daniele De Rossi hitting a post early on. But despite their dominance, Italy could not score and the match went to penalties. Steven Gerrard and Wayne Rooney netted from 12 yards, but Gianluigi Buffon saved Ashley Cole’s effort and Ashley Young missed his spot-kick, leaving Alessandro Diamanti to send England packing.

England 1 Italy 2 – June 14 2014, Manaus

Claudio Marchisio

England’s World Cup campaign began with defeat in the tropical heat of Manaus. Despite a promising performance, Roy Hodgson’s men were undone by familiar defensive frailties. Claudio Marchisio drilled the Italians ahead from 25 yards but Daniel Sturridge gave England hope when he fired home from a Wayne Rooney cross to equalise. However England were left pointless when Mario Balotelli headed the winner for Italy early in the second half.

Press Association


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