A few hours after the draw between Ukraine and England, Italy lost two points in North Macedonia and had to settle for a parity score (1-1). For his first on the bench of the Squadra Azzurra, Luciano Spalletti had undoubtedly dreamed of a better scenario in Skopje.
After a fairly dull first period, despite a shot on the post from Tonali (21st), Ciro Immobile opened the scoring following a strike from Barella returning from the locker room (47th). But the Macedonians, very courageous and dominant at the end of the game, managed to equalize thanks to a superb direct free kick from Enis Bardhi (81st).
“The team delivered a good match overall, we lost our defensive organization a little and it could have ended even worse for us,” reacted Spalletti, successor to Roberto Mancini, at the final whistle.
In the standings of Group C, the Nazionale remains 3rd with 4 points, three lengths behind Ukraine (2nd with one more match) which it will face on Tuesday evening in Milan. A decisive meeting that the Italians will absolutely have to win to avoid compromising their chances of qualifying for Euro 2024.