Italy vs North Macedonia: In a historic and shocking turn of events, North Macedonia traveled to Italy to beat the European champions in a World Cup qualifier. Anything and everything was at stake for both teams and most would have expected a comfortable win for Italy, but the gods were on the underdog’s side tonight.
Roberto Mancini’s Azzurri dominated tonight’s action. But they won’t be at the World Cup for the second year in a row. Football can be a strange game, although North Macedonia were not at all threatening for the full 90 minutes, nabbing a late, late winner just as the game went into overtime.
Below are the player ratings at the end of the 90 minutes:
Italy vs North Macedonia
21. Gianluigi Donnarumma (6/10): The PSG shot stopper had little action between the sticks. His team was always up front at the other end of the field.
16. Alessandro Florenzi (7.5/10): Florenzi was incredibly successful at dominating the right flank. His role was to back up Berardi on occasional attacks and keep things nice and comfortable off the ball.
19. Gianluca Mancini (6.5/10): The young centre-back was in the starting XI ahead of the likes of Giorgio Chiellini and Francesco Acerbi. However, the lack of experience meant little. Mancini played a solid game and kept his cool until the end.
23. Alessandro Bastoni (7.25/10): While his interceptions and tackles were all very useful, his development as a ball-playing centre-back at Inter was commendable. This was a notable aspect of today’s game that Bastonis Nation willingly picked up.
13. Emerson Palmieri (7/10): We haven’t really seen the left-back’s best since his exploits at last year’s European Championship. His combinations with a disappointing Ciro Immobile broke the most, but he was effective at preserving the football, going through and exchanging a pass or two.
8. Jorginho (7.25/10): Unlike his limited role at Chelsea, Jorginho wasn’t limited to one region on the pitch. With added mobility, he was able to make the most of Nicolo Barella’s fluid technique and with Veratti in this form.
6. Marco Veratti (8.5/10): As with most other football games he takes part in, Marco Veratti dominated the show for the Azzurri tonight, maintaining possession, creating chances for the likes of Barella and Insigne and taking every opportunity that came his way.
18. Nicolo Barella (6.25/10): The young Inter midfielder made some nervous calls early in the game and quickly made up for his mistakes by combining fairly well with his teammates. In the 77th minute, Barella was sent off. Slightly disappointed.
11. Domenico Berardi (7.75/10): Simply put, Berardi was the most effective of the front three. His end product might not have been the best, but he was at the top when it came to showing the qualities of a true winger. He drifted wide, combining with his full-back and testing the opposing keeper when he could.
17. Ciro Immobile (5.5/10): Several missed chances, many more sloppy regrets for the Lazio centre-forward from today’s game. Immobile was substituted in the 77th minute, but the damage was already done, the captain underplayed the game.
10. Lorenzo Insigne (5.75/10): With a lot more coming at him in the first half and Macedonia’s defensive line getting thicker as the game progressed, Insigne could easily have made the difference he normally is.
22. Giacomo Raspadori (6.25/10): The youngster was given limited time to try and change the game. He seemed quite calm and uncomfortable as he looked up at a pile of Macedonian shirts in front of him.
7. Lorenzo Pellegrini (6/10): Didn’t have the impact most would have foreseen. With Immobile falling short of their usual standards, the onus fell on Pellegrini to replace the Lazio man and try to make the difference.
4. Sandro Tonali (6/10): Far less involved than one might have expected in the last 13 minutes. Although he rarely had the ball at his feet.
9. Joao Pedro (N/A)
1. Stole Dimitrievski (8.5/10): The Rayo Vallecano goalkeeper has kept a historic clean sheet, sending his nation to the World Cup. A memorable performance in a game where the odds were heavily against his side.
Stefan Ristowski (6.75/10): The captain was alert on the far right. A cut from Lorenzo Insigne and an electric Emerson from the outside is not a combination you should face in a game where your World Cup hopes are literally on the line. Nevertheless, the Macedonian defender played relatively calmly.
Darko Velkowski (6.25/10): Velkovski was often tasked with being an old-fashioned centre-back and booting the ball away, and he did just that. At the end of his 86 minutes, he had amassed a warning, 12 clearances and 2 interceptions to his name.
6. Visar Musliu (8.25/10): The 27-year-old is known for being prone to errors and lacking the physical qualities of other defenders in the game, but this game will not be forgotten for a long time. With body and soul and the spirit of a commander, Musliu wore his heart on his sleeve today. commendable.
8. Ezgjan Alioski (6.5/10): The left-back was crucial to force Domenico Berardi out of action. Despite being downed multiple times later in the game, he did a semi-decent job of keeping Florenzi and Berardi to clean sheets.
5. Arijan Ademi (6.75/10): The defense shielded, played calculated passes, occasionally made mistakes and put on a very mixed performance. As for Macedonia’s system, Ademi was crucial in finding space between the lines and blocking vertical passes.
11. Darko Churlinov (6.5/10): Churlinov was essentially a defender tonight. As part of the Macedonian idea of keeping Italy away and keeping them frustrated, he was more of a support full-back at the time.
16. Boban Nikolov (5.75/10): His time on the pitch was cut short due to injury. He was lively in a substitution or two as Macedonia tried to save the ball, but otherwise the number 16 was just another of the shirts Blagoja Milevski put behind the ball.
10. Enis Bardhi (6/10): The Levante starman failed to create space where he usually does in the left half spaces. He’s often worried about Alessandro Bastoni’s stealth and discipline in those positions, but he doesn’t mind. He’s going to the World Cup and Bastoni isn’t.
9. Aleksander Trajkobvakski (7.5/10): His strike will long be remembered by the millions of North Macedonians who cheered tonight. It was a truly spectacular goal that fits the description of what a 90th-minute winner would otherwise look like in my head. Outside of this goal he was not very active.
Milan Ristovski (6.25/10): The striker only lasted 72 minutes, after which he was duly replaced by a defender. In a game where the hosts had 30 shots, it’s hard to imagine the Macedonian forward seeing much of the ball.
- Stefan Spirovski (6.25/10): Mainly occupied midfield positions, although sent in to slow things down a bit at a time when the Italians were becoming increasingly cold-blooded.
3. Stefan Askovski (6.25/10): In the half hour he was spared he did well to pull off a few notable tackles and clearances like every other Macedonian player was doing at the time.
23. Bojan Miovski (6/10): Bojan got the assist that sends his nation to the World Cup. That was pretty much his only meaningful contribution in the game.
4. Kire Ristevski (N/A):
ALSO READ: Manchester United Hold Interviews For New Managerial Candidates And Are ‘Impressed’ By Erik Ten Hag
https://firstsportz.com/italy-vs-north-macedonia-player-ratings/ Italy vs North Macedonia player ratings as North Macedonia stuns European champions in Palermo » FirstSportz