Italy And Spain Draw On A Friendly Clash

By Riccardo Di Julio
Italy U-17
Picture provided by the FIGC official website

In occasion to a friendly encounter in view of the 2014 European Championship in Malta, both the U-17 selections of Italy and Spain have put up a great performance in front of the approximately 2,500 spectators present at the Stadio Comunale of Chiavari, Liguria.

The match, which ended on a 1-1 draw, satisfied both coaches overall, as they will be approaching the upcoming tournament as two of the main candidates to win the title. For the home team, moreover, the good level shown simply represents a continuation of the great work undertaken by the manager Daniele Zoratto since 2011.

With him on command, in fact, the so-called Azzurrini were very close from winning the 2013 European Championship of Slovakia, in which they only lost in the final against Russia in the lottery of penalty kicks. For this reason, Malta 2014 will represent a must-win occasion for the Italians, as they will be looking to achieve their very first title of this competition in this category.

Previously, back when the competition was played by the U-16 selections, Italy had the honor of only winning it once, in 1982, which also represented the first edition ever disputed. On the other hand, the Spanish side, who already has the most titles in history, will have the chance to win the competition for the ninth time in history (six in the U-16 and two in the U-17).

In today’s game, Osasuna‘s midfielder  Enrique Barja opened up the score-sheet in less than 10 minutes into the first half by taking advantage of an Italy’s defensive mistake. The equalizer only arrived into the second period, when Inter‘s forward Federico Bonazolli found the net from the rebound of a penalty missed by his teammate Federico Dimarco.

For the 16 year old, who is not related to the former striker Emiliano Bonazzoli, this goal is just another addition to the basis of a great prospect career, which has already earned the merit of being called up by the Nerazzurri’s manager Walter Mazzarri in occasion to the Coppa Italia match against Trapani.

Riccardo Di Julio is a Soccer Writer for Follow him on Twitter @Italcatenaccio and add him to your network on Google.

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