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The winners of Euro 2020, Italy, and the holders of the Copa America, Argentina, will meet in the 2022 Finalissima at Wembley Stadium on Wednesday night.
In a rare sporting spectacle, European and South American football champions will face off in a one-off match at the iconic Wembley Stadium, London on Wednesday (India time). And the occasion is Finalissima 2022 — an Italy vs Argentina clash. This will be only the third showdown between the CONMEBOL and UEFA champions. The ITA vs ARG football match will be telecast live. (More Football News)
Italy beat England on penalties last summer to become European champions, while Argentina recorded a 1-0 victory over Brazil in the final of the Copa America.
After their shock failure to qualify for the FIFA 2022 World Cup in Qatar, Italy return to the scene of their EURO 2020 triumph when they face Argentina at Wembley Stadium in the Finalissima.
One of their heroes of that win over England in the final, Giorgio Chiellini, will play the final match of his Azzurri career in the one-off game played over 90 minutes.
There will be no extra time and the match will go straight to penalties if the scores are level at full time, which will be a relief to both sets of players following the end of their domestic seasons.
Argentina earned their place in the Finalissima by winning the Copa America for the first time since 1993, handing their captain, Paris Saint-Germain superstar Lionel Messi, his first major trophy with his country.
Italy beat Austria, Belgium and Spain in the knockout rounds of last summer’s European Championship before overcoming England on penalties in the final following a 1-1 draw.
The triumph saw the Blues become European champions for just the second time in their history, but they have incredibly now missed out on the finals of the last two World Cups, failing to qualify in 2018 before missing out on the 2022 competition by losing to North Macedonia in the semi-finals of the playoffs back in March.
Roberto Mancini’s immediate focus is on Wednesday’s affair, but they will also begin their UEFA Nations League campaign on June 4, taking on Germany twice, Hungary and England in quick succession, before returning to action in September with a home fixture against England.
Giorgio Chiellini will make his final Italy appearance against Argentina, with the 37-year-old set to bring a long international career to a close, but Mancini will also be looking to the future, with a number of uncapped players in the squad.
Italy have lost each of their last three matches against Argentina, which have all been friendlies, with their last competitive meeting coming at the 1990 World Cup, when Argentina won 4-3 on penalties after a 1-1 draw in the semi-finals of the competition.
Argentina, meanwhile, won the Copa America for the first time since 1993 last summer, beating Brazil 1-0 in the final courtesy of a first-half effort from Angel Di Maria.
The White and Sky Blues beat Ecuador and Colombia in the quarter-finals and semi-finals to advance to the final, and they have also qualified for the 2022 World Cup courtesy of an unbeaten qualification campaign.
Argentina were runners-up at the 2014 World Cup but went out in the round of 16 in 2018, and it will be fascinating to see how they perform in this year’s competition, with the South American nation bidding to lift the trophy for the third time.
Lionel Scaloni’s side have not been in action since drawing 1-1 with Ecuador in a World Cup qualifier at the end of March, while they are unbeaten in all competitions since July 2019, which should hand them confidence heading into Wednesday’s affair.
There will be no extra time in the Finalissima, so a penalty shootout will occur if the match is level at the end of 90 minutes, and Argentina won the 1993 edition, then called the Artemio Franchi Cup, by beating Denmark on penalties.
Angel Di Maria scored the all-important goal against Brazil in the CONMEBOL Copa America 2021 final to help Argentina win their first major title in nearly three decades (28 years to be precise). Their record-equalling 15th continental title also meant that Lionel Messi finally lifted a trophy with the national senior team.
And after 29 years, Argentina can defend the Finalissima, also known as the Artemio Franchi Cup, or otherwise the European/South American Nations Cup. The Albiceleste won the previous edition, beating Denmark on penalties at home (Mar del Plata) in 1993. The first edition was won by France, who defeated Uruguay 2-0 in Paris in 1985.
Argentina, who were camping in Spain, have named a 29-man squad, featuring the likes of Lionel Messi, Angel Di Maria, Lautaro Martinez, etc. The clash against the reigning European champions will no doubt serve as a preparation for Lionel Scaloni’s men ahead of the FIFA World Cup 2022.
On the contrary, Italy have dramatically failed to qualify for the successive football World Cups. A win for the four-time world champions against Argentina will assuage, to some degree, the pain of missing out on the plane to Qatar. This will be Italy’s first appearance in the CONMEBOL–UEFA Cup of Champions. Azzurri defeated England on penalties in the UEFA Euro 2020 final.
Roberto Mancini have named a jumbo squad of 45 players for the match, including retiring captain Giorgio Chiellini. It was reduced to 30 men on Tuesday. Other notable stars in the squad are Lorenzo Insigne, Marco Verratti, Gianluigi Donnarumma, etc. But they are without Domenico Berardi, Andrea Pinamonti, Federico Chiesa, Ciro Immobile, Gaetano Castrovilli and Rafael Toloi.
There will be no extra-time after the end of the regulation period. If scores remain level, the winners will be decided on penalties. A team can name a maximum of 12 substitutes, but only five can be replaced during the play.
Italy vs Argentina, Finalissima 2022 match details
Match: Italy vs Argentina
Date: June 2 (Thursday), 2022