GIANLUCA MANCINI’s spectacular own goal couldn’t stop Italy from pushing Hungary to the top of England’s Nations League group.
The Azzurri stayed on to go from Italian Sob to Italian Job Done as they sank the Three Lions’ conquerors 2-1 in Cesena.
European champions Italy have kept just one clean sheet in their last eight games.
But until Mancini arrived on the hour to magic in a cross from Attila Fiola, who narrowly missed the post, it looked like they would halve that stunning stat.
Nicolo Barella with vigor and Lorenzo Pellegrini with ease rewarded Italy’s dominance with goals after 30 and 45 minutes respectively.
But Mancini caused some nervous moments for his teammates and eponymous manager Roberto by arriving at the wrong place at the wrong time to break his own net.
Fiola matched his impressive approach work down the right side by raking the ball across.
And Mancini slid in with a precision of touch and timing that would have been applauded … had he shown it on the other end.
The Roma star remained prostrate in fear and embarrassment at full strength before teammates pulled him up.
In the end, however, the Hungarians lacked the extra class to fully atone for their shot on goal with an equalizer.
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And now it’s England on their stomachs – with just a point at the bottom of the group.
Italy clearly deserved their overall victory.
Hungary keeper Denes Dibusz saved a Mancini header early on.
Azzurri stopper Gianluigi Donnarumma responded with equal deftness to deny Roland Salli.
But it was all different when Italy pounced on the half hour.
Leonardo Spinazzola pushed the ball over the edge of the box so Barella could shoot home.
Pellegrini could have almost doubled the lead with Wilfried Gnonto, but immediately shot into the goal himself from Matteo Politano.
Napoli winger Politano hit the bar just after the break.
And Italy’s fluid game looked set for a potentially bigger win – until Mancini’s unexpected intervention ensured a surprisingly tight final.
https://www.the-sun.com/sport/football/premier-league/5512792/italy-2-1-hungary-mancini-own-goal-nations-league/ Watch Gianluca Mancini’s horror own goal as Italy cling to the top of England’s Nations League group with a 2-1 win over Hungary