Mancini: ‘Extraordinary Italy in Holland’

Roberto Mancini said Italy were ‘extraordinary’ in their 1-0 Nations League victory in Holland. ‘We should’ve killed the game off earlier.’

Nicolò Barella got the only goal with a rare header on Ciro Immobile’s cross, though Gianluigi Donnarumma made a sensational save on Donny van de Beek.

“The Dutch created a few chances with Van Dijk in attack and long balls, as we were tired at the 87th, but we should’ve killed the game earlier,” the coach told RAI Sport.

“I am satisfied with the mentality, the performance in Amsterdam and the lads were extraordinary this evening.”

Manuel Locatelli made his senior Italy debut in midfield and the Sassuolo man was one of the most impressive on the night.

“We called Locatelli because we think he’s a great player who can still improve. He has physicality, quality, vision, he has everything.

“We had a classic 4-3-3 today and it’s going well, so we want to continue like this. You don’t win 11 games in a row without a strong mentality and good, solid tactics. The teams we beat in Euro 2020 qualifying weren’t at the level of Holland or Germany, but winning games is till tough.”

There was one dark shadow, as Nicolò Zaniolo went off with a knee injury, a suspected new ACL tear.

“I hope it’s nothing serious, we’ll know more tomorrow.”

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