Italy to have new look for European Championship qualifiers: What role will Gianluca Scamacca play?

Much has been said in recent years about Italy's striker issues, and Roberto Mancini could give Gianluca Scamacca a proper run at the position in the near future. Other changes are also in the works for the Azzurri.


Roberto Mancini is expected to integrate West Ham United striker Gianluca Scamacca into the Italy squad when the Azzurri play in September for the 2024 European Championship qualifiers.

The Italian coach has been reluctant to let go of some of his stalwarts from the Euro 2020 triumph, but after witnessing his team win 3-2 in the Nations League against The Netherlands on Sunday afternoon, he is developing more faith in the newer players.

According to La Repubblica, Mancini will ditch his experiments with back three formations and bring back the 4-3-3 formation, which functioned well until they failed to qualify for the 2022 World Cup. One of the keys to making his attacking plan work is having an in-form striker, which has been a major problem throughout his tenure coaching Italy.

Scamacca to take priority over Retegui and Immobile in Italy attack

Despite scoring just eight goals in 27 competitive matches throughout the 2022/23 campaign for West Ham, Scamacca possesses characteristics that Mancini is looking for in a centre-forward. The 24-year-old has the physical strength to hold up the ball as well as shrug off opponents, and his technique on the ball is clean despite standing at 195 cm tall.

Argentinian-born striker Mateo Retegui was a revelation in his first two matches for Italy, scoring in each international, but his performance against the Dutch showed that he cannot hold the ball up or link up with teammates like Scamacca can.

Ciro Immobile has been the first option up front for Italy during the majority of the Mancini era, but considering that he is 33 years old and he has not lived up to expectations for the national team, the Lazio striker does not have a long-term future with the national team.

Mateo Retegui celebrates against Malta. (@Azzurri)

Mancini to integrate Under-20 stars Casadei and Baldanzi

Although he has shown an undying loyalty to veterans like Leonardo Bonucci, Jorginho, Marco Verratti, and Immobile, Mancini has shown that he can give younger players like Wilfried Gnonto, Giacomo Raspadori, and Alessandro Buongiorno opportunities to shine as well.

The performances of Italian starlets Cesare Casadei and Tommaso Baldanzi at the Under-20 World Cup have caught the attention of the senior coach, and the duo might have a long-term future with the Azzurri if they can bring their form from the Azzurrini with them at a higher level.

With the European Under-21 Championship commencing shortly, any potential stars from that tournament could also represent Italy at senior level in September.


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