Italy legend Beppe Bergomi: We would now be in the quarterfinals

2 months ago

Italy legend Beppe Bergomi believes that if the Azzurri had qualified for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, they ‘would’ve certainly been in the top eight’ of the tournament. The Nazionale won EURO 2020 last summer by beating England in the Final on penalties, but missed out on Qatar because they finished second in qualifying to Switzerland and then lost the play-off to North Macedonia.

“It is sad for these lads to win the Euros and then go into what on paper was an easy group and miss out,” 1982 World Cup winner Bergomi told Sportitalia. “I don’t think there was arrogance, especially as I know Roberto Mancini well, but in modern football it’s a game of such fine margins. If the ball had hit the post and gone in instead of out, we’d be there now.”

Jorginho failed to convert a penalty in both the draws against Switzerland, which ultimately cost Italy the qualification. “It proves you can take nothing for granted, as Jorginho had always been so good at penalties and then missed two.”

Seeing the performances of the teams in Qatar only increased those regrets, because nobody seems to be consistently strong. “We have a good squad, some good young players, but we’ve seen that other national teams like Germany and Spain are also struggling like we did with having a centre-forward. “I think if we had been at the World Cup, we would’ve certainly been in the top eight.”