Despite a long-term contract, the future of Roberto Mancini will be at stake in the World Cup playoffs. The coach will seriously mull over stepping down if the Azzurri failed to qualify for Qatar 2022, missing out on the second straight edition.
According to Corriere della Sera, the gaffer has the full support of the Italian Football Association. President Gabriele Gravina has already stated that he would not resign, differently from what happened in similar situations in the past. Still, he faces increasing opposition from Serie A because of his agenda. The pressure would intensify with a negative outcome.
Mancini has called up Mattia De Sciglio to replace Giovanni Di Lorenzo. The Napoli fullback suffered a knee injury in the Udinese game. He once again snubbed Davide Calabria. The coach might not field any of the Euro starters versus North Macedonia, Tuttomercatoweb informs. Giorgio Chiellini is fit, but he has played just 45 minutes in the last month. Leonardo Bonucci has not featured since February 26th. Leonardo Spinazzola is still on the mend due to an Achilles’ tendon tear.
According to the publication, Mancini is contemplating deploying Alessandro Bastoni or the Lazio duo Luiz Felipe and Francesco Acerbi in the first game. Alessandro Florenzi will likely get the nod as a right-back. Emerson Palmieri is the favorite over Cristiano Biraghi and De Sciglio on the left flank. Instead, the rest of the lineup is up in the air. The boss will try properly manage the energies ahead of the second potential bout.