Roberto Mancini Says 'Italy Will Win the World Cup' as Azzurri Misses Direct World Cup Qualification

© REUTERS / ALBERTO LINGRIASoccer Football - World Cup - UEFA Qualifiers - Group C - Italy v Switzerland - Stadio Olimpico, Rome, Italy - November 12, 2021 Italy coach Roberto Mancini reacts
Soccer Football - World Cup - UEFA Qualifiers - Group C - Italy v Switzerland - Stadio Olimpico, Rome, Italy - November 12, 2021 Italy coach Roberto Mancini reacts  - Sputnik International, 1920, 16.11.2021
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Italy has been the team to beat in recent times in international football, especially after their heroics in 2021. Not only did the Azzurri claim their maiden European Championship by beating England in the final in July, but also created a new world record for the longest winning streak (37) in September.
A bullish Italy boss Roberto Mancini is quite confident about his team's ability to make it to the 2022 World Cup in the Middle East despite their inability to secure a place in the event in Belfast on Monday night.

The Italians, who have dominated global football of late, were unimpressive against the Northern Irishmen as they couldn't create enough attacking opportunities, eventually ending the match without a goal, resulting in the game finishing 0-0, with neither team scoring a goal.

However, Italy's draw was not the only reason behind their failure to top Group C, which would have sealed their spot in the World Cup. It was Switzerland's 4-0 demolition of Bulgaria which took them to 18 points, while the Azzurri remained on 16 points.

The Swiss team's lopsided triumph meant that the Italians will now have to win their play-offs in March to ensure their hopes of featuring in the next year's World Cup remain intact.
"I am disappointed," Mancini said after his team's goalless draw in Belfast. "We made life complicated for ourselves and qualification should've been sealed at least two games ago."
Blaming Northern Ireland's tactics for the stalemate, Mancini insisted that their opponents had employed an entire battery of defenders to prevent them from scoring goals and sadly they were successful.

"At the moment, we are struggling to score goals, despite dominating possession and the initiative. Northern Ireland put everyone in defence and we struggle to break sides like that down," he said.

The legendary manager who guided Italy to Euro 2020 glory during the summer, acknowledged that his team had had chances to confirm their World Cup spot in previous games but failed to grab its chances.
"It's a pity, because we should've sealed the group long before it came to this. We just need to rediscover what characterised us up until today. We had two missed penalties in the decisive matches, so that shows we had the chances to win," he continued.
Despite the Italian team's failure to seal a direct entry into next year's FIFA World Cup in Qatar, Mancini is absolutely sure that his side will make it to the prestigious tournament through the play-offs and would go on to win it as well.

"Now we prepare for March and we go into the play-offs confident. We'll book our place in the World Cup in March and hopefully win the tournament too," Mancini concluded.
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