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Italy

Zaza and Immobile impress

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Horncastle: Italy roll dice on Conte

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Rodriguez lost control in Italy-Uruguay

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John Brewin profile picture  By John Brewin

Andros Townsend saves Roy Hodgson as England draw with Italy

Andros Townsend equalises late for England as they play out a 1-1 draw with Italy in Turin.
INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY: Graziano Pelle (29') Italy 1-0 England

Three points on the 1-1 friendly draw between Italy and England on Tuesday.

1. Townsend saves England

Andros Townsend is a confirmed favourite of England manager Roy Hodgson. No wonder, since the Tottenham winger was the wild card who inspired his country at the tail end of qualification for the last World Cup. Hodgson wanted to take Townsend to Brazil before injury intervened, and the manager's admiration can only have been enhanced by Townsend's thrilling equaliser in Turin.

Townsend's 79th-minute,...

Vazquez could use Italy call-up to prove success isn't limited to Palermo

ESPN FC's Paul Mariner and Mark Donaldson preview the international friendly between Italy and England in Turin.
Argentinian-born Franco Vazquez could make his Italy debut vs. England on Tuesday.

Franco Vázquez will become the latest member of Italy's national team if he takes to the field against England in Turin on Tuesday. The Argentinian-born attacking midfielder, whose mother hails from Padua in northern Italy, has enjoyed an excellent season in Serie A with Palermo with seven goals and nine assists and is expected to make his debut off the bench for Antonio Conte's side.

Vázquez was born in Tanti, Córdoba province to an Italian mother and Argentinian father. He grew...

John Brewin profile picture  By John Brewin

England vs. Italy may be a friendly but it remains crucial for Roy Hodgson

Perspiration dripped from Roy Hodgson's forehead as he delivered his verdict on England's 2-1 loss to Italy in Manaus, their opening match of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. But he was not sweating on suffering a defeat.

The Amazonian heat was oppressive for fans and journalists. His players' drop in energy levels in the second half was wholly understandable considering the 84.2 degree Fahrenheit temperature and 88 percent humidity, but the English had taken heart from a spirited performance. There...

Verratti struggles to escape Pirlo's shadow in Italy's midfield

Eder's beautiful debut goal for Italy came late and helped earn a draw to increase their unbeaten run in qualification competitions to 45.

For La Gazzetta dello Sport, it was "Verratti Time". Saturday's Euro 2016 qualifier against Bulgaria in Sofia was anticipated as the moment for the "little owl" to deliver for his country like he does for his club.

Daniele De Rossi had been left out of the squad on account of a loss of form, while also missing was Andrea Pirlo, who stayed in Turin to complete his recovery from a groin strain, and Claudio Marchisio, who suffered a controversial and bitterly disputed injury during a warm-up at Italy's...

 By Michael Cox

Can Verratti, De Gea and Kane break into their national teams' starting XIs?

The ESPN FC crew debate whether or not Harry Kane should start up front for England against Lithuania.

The European Championship's expansion to a 24-team tournament has a multitude of effects -- one is that it effectively gives the major countries a free pass. Therefore, managers have more license to experiment and evolve their side with significantly less risk of failure.

Here are five fine talents still attempting to break into their country's first-choice XI -- what chance do they have of overhauling more established names?

1. Marco Verratti, Italy

By this stage, we expected Verratti to be Italy's...

Three Points: Italy vs. Croatia

Croatia respond quickly to Italy's early goal to draw with in this group H clash of the table leaders in a game that was extended due to flares being thrown onto the pitch.
Play was suspended between Italy and Croatia in Milan after flares rained down from the stands onto the pitch.
Croatia and Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric had to leave his side's Euro 2016 Qualifying match against Italy due to an apparent thigh injury.

A trio of observations on Italy and Croatia's 1-1 draw in Euro 2016 qualifying.

1. Conte takes the draw

Antonio Conte believes appetite comes with eating -- winning begets winning. Up until now Italy had won all four games since his appointment and another one on Sunday would have matched the record for the best ever start made by an Azzurri coach, as established by Edmondo Fabbri and equalled by Azeglio Vicini.

So why, then, did Conte say before the game that "we don't need to win to be satisfied...