Axed Donadoni living in the past

June 26, 2008

Roberto Donadoni has lost his job as Italy coach following Sunday’s penalty shootout defeat by Spain in the Euro 2008 quarter-finals. 

The 44-year-old seems bemused as to why failure on penalties should mean the axe. He should realise that the reason for his departure is that the world champions were poor throughout the tournament, even if they managed to sneak through to the last eight and almost the semi-finals. 

Having played in a dour Italy side in the 1980s and 90s where a 0-0 draw was almost seen as better than a 3-2 win, Donadoni is behind the times.  

International soccer has moved on from the defence-obsessed tactics of tournaments such as Italia ’90. The Dutch and Russians among others have shown at Euro 2008 that flowing, exciting football can be played on the biggest stage.

World Cup-winning coach Marcello Lippi is widely expected to take charge of the Azzurri again. Can he change the Italian mindset or will they be left behind by the vibrant, new brand of international soccer?  


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Italy better start playing pure attacking game. they should not worry abt their defence as its one of the best in the world.
Hope to see revived and better Italia in world cups

Posted by Umar | Report as abusive

Mark are you a football journalist? Are you talking about countries that don’t even qualify for the Euro that apparetly play ‘international soccer?’ Italy played the same way as they did when they won the World Cup as has been quoted by previous coaches of the country. Who are you trying to convince with this rubbish article? I thought the defensive / counter attacking style that Manchester United implemented to win the Champions League was akin to watching the Italian team. At least some in your country (or should i say island) realise that a 1-0 win is better then a 4-3 loss.

Posted by Luke | Report as abusive

I actually work in Italy, Luke. Most commentators, even in Italy, agree with the sentiments of my blog but you are totally within your rights to disagree.
I never mentioned Manchester United above. I agree they were quite defensive in the Champions League. I was specifically referring to international football which without doubt is becoming a lot more open. The Italians played a bit more freely in 2006 and that’s why they won. Here they had no ideas upfront and tried to bore their way through the tournament, which just won’t work anymore

Posted by Mark Meadows | Report as abusive

Italy we awful , how you can consider them world champions playing like that is a joke. Viva Espana , Viva Fernando y Viva Liverpool FC

Posted by kieran | Report as abusive

Italy is a threat for enjoyment. Thank God Spain won. I hope Spain wins the World Cup!!

Posted by ivan | Report as abusive

I think Lippi can change the Italian mindset. I hope Italy can be more offensive up front using 2 forwards and not just 1.

Posted by Monica 08 | Report as abusive