‘It’s too early’ – Roberto Mancini 'too disappointed' to discuss future after North Macedonia loss
Italy have failed to qualify for the last two editions of the World Cup after their loss to North Macedonia in their World Cup qualification play-off semi-final, and manager Roberto Mancini says he is 'too disappointed' to discuss his future. The Azzurri won the World Cup in 2006 but were knocked out at the group stage in 2010 and 2014 and have failed to qualify for 2018 and 2022.
Italy dominated for large swathes of the encounter at Stadio Renzo Barbera, but Aleksander Trajkovski delivered a fatal blow late on.
It means the European champions have failed to qualify for the last two editions of the World Cup. The Azzurri won the World Cup in 2006 but were knocked out at the group stage in 2010 and 2014 and have failed to qualify for 2018 and 2022.
Much has been made of his emotional connection with his players and the former Manchester City boss said after the match that the squad had a bright future irrespective of whether he continues as coach.
“I have to say, I care more for my lads now than I did in July,” added Mancini.
“This is such a tough moment, my affection for them is immense. It’s too early to say what happens next, as there is such disappointment, but at the same time this is a squad of great players with a bright future.”
Giorgio Chiellini and Jorginho of Italy reacts at the end of the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifier knockout round play-off match between Italy and North Macedonia at Stadio Comunale Renzo Barbera on March 24, 2022 in Palermo, Italy