Didi Hamann takes aim at England after Italy's shock World Cup exit
Italy have missed out on qualification for the World Cup for the second tournament in a row.
Didi Hamann has taken aim at the England team following Italy's failure to qualify for the World Cup on Thursday night.
Italy beat England on penalties to win Euro 2020 last summer. However, less than a year later, the European champions suffered a harrowing loss to North Macedonia in the playoff semi-finals.
As a result, the Azzurri will not take part in the tournament in Qatar later this year.
Didi Hamann takes aim at England team after Italy's World Cup failure.
Hamann suggested on Twitter that England's loss to Italy at Wembley last July could now be viewed in a different light given Italy's failure to advance past North Macedonia, who are ranked 65th in the world.
The former Liverpool and Germany midfielder questioned if the England team will still see their defeat to the Azzurri as a 'success' given Italy's recent troubles.
He said that England missed a 'golden opportunity' to win an international tournament, and claims that the country still handed out honours as if they were 'smarties.'
After seeing what happened to Italy last night I wonder whether last years runner up spot is still deemed a success for England. Golden opportunity missed but still OBE‘s given out like smarties
— Didi Hamann (@DietmarHamann) March 25, 2022
Italy's troubles since Euro 2020 victory against England.
Gareth Southgate's side had home advantage and took the lead against Italy at the Euro 2020 final.
Yet, they didn't take control of the game and Italy, who had arguably been the best team at the tournament, outplayed them for most of the match. Leonardo Bonnuci scored the equaliser in the second half before Italy won the trophy on penalties.
However, since that victory, Roberto Mancini's side have struggled to regain top form.
In their qualification group, Italy drew with Switzerland home and away and also recorded disappointing draws with Bulgaria and Northern Ireland.
Jorginho also missed penalties in the games against the Swiss. If the Chelsea midfielder had have scored either of his spot-kicks, and Italy won either match, they would have qualified for the World Cup in Qatar.
Against North Macedonia in Palermo on Thursday night, Italy dominated possession and took 32 shots on goal. Yet, they couldn't find a breakthrough.
Aleksandar Trajkovski scored in stoppage time for North Macedonia, who advance to the playoff final to play Portugal on Tuesday.
- Tearful Jorginho admits penalty misses will 'haunt him for the rest of his life'.
- Leonardo Bonucci claims Declan Rice "mistake" spurred Italy to Euro 2020 victory.
- How Roberto Mancini rejuvenated a weary Italy from their lowest ebb.