Italy national football team (Azzuri)

Founded: 1898
Manager:
Address: Federazione Italiana Giuoco Calcio
Via Gregorio Allegri 14
Roma 00198
Italy
Website: www.figc.it

Italy is the most successful European team in the history of the World Cup having won the tournament on four occasions as well as the European Championships in 1968.

Italy's most famous victory came when they beat the great Brazilian team in the 1982 World Cup. Inspired by Paulo Rossi, they went onto win the tournament defeating West Germany in the final.

The Azzurri has a history of playing with a defensive Catenaccio style. With a highly organised back-line the system aims above all to limit the opponent?s goal scoring opportunities.

Some of the most important players to have been produced by Italy are defenders:

  • Gaetano Scirea, who operated as a libero, most notably at the 1982 World Cup
  • Franco Baresi, AC Milan's player of the century who played in 1982
  • Paulo Maldini, Italian captain whose career spanned over three decades
  • Fabio Cannavaro who led his country to World Cup glory in 2006

Recently, the integrity of the Italian football has come into question. The Calciopoli scandal saw major clubs punished for match fixing. In spite of the scandal Italy still defied the odds to win World Cup 2006.

Italy 'A' international all-time totals

Games won: 419
Games drawn: 207
Games lost: 158
Goals for: 1332
Goals against: 765
Average goals for: 1.70
Average goals against: 0.98

Venue: Stadio Olimpico, Rome