Cesare Casadei has been shining bright for Italy U20, helping them reach the U20 World Cup final in Argentina by scoring the opening goal in the 2-1 win against South Korea in the semi-final. He spent the 2022/23 campaign on loan at Reading in the Championship from Chelsea, where he moved to from Inter Primavera last summer.
Azzurri manager Roberto Mancini has heaped praise on Casadei, who is now the leading goalscorer at the tournament with 7 goals. He also has two assists.
Chelsea’s Cesare Casadei has scored 7 goals in 6 games from MIDFIELD for the Azzurrini ???
He’s been unstoppable in this World Cup tournament ? pic.twitter.com/Ut8nvWHC18
— Italian Football TV (@IFTVofficial) June 8, 2023
Mancini was quizzed if the Chelsea U21 midfielder could follow the footsteps of central midfield icons such as Paul Pogba or Sergej Milinkovic-Savic.
“Casadei like Pogba and Milinkovic? Yes, he’s very good. He impressed me during in Coverciano. He went to England and plays in the Championship, a very tough and formative league, almost like the Premier League. It helped him a lot. If there hadn’t been the U20 World Cup, he would already be with the Under 21s.” (via Calciomercato)
Casadei left Inter Primavera for Chelsea last summer. It remans to be seen if to-be Blues tactician Mauricio Pochettino promotes him to the first team ahead of the 2023/24 season. Thanks to Casadei’s brilliant first-time finish and Simone Pafundi’s exquisite late free kick, Italy will face Uruguay in the final on June 11.
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