MX23RW : Friday, March 29 12:13:25| >> :600:459798:459798:

Roberto Mancini excited for Moise Kean's "enormous potential"

Roberto Mancini excited for Moise Kean's
© Reuters
Kean and Nicolo Barella secured a 2-0 victory.

Italy coach Roberto Mancini hailed teenage goalscorer Moise Kean's "enormous potential" after his side's 2-0 win against Finland.

The Azzurri launched their Euro 2020 qualifying campaign with victory thanks to Nicolo Barella and Kean, who scored their first goals for their country in either half at the Friuli Stadium in Udine.

Mancini was rewarded for turning to youth as Cagliari midfielder Barella, 22, and Juventus forward Kean, 19, ensured Italy scored more than one goal in a competitive game for the first time in almost two years.

"Kean has quality, enormous potential and it all depends on him," said Mancini, who also handed late teenage substitute Nicolo Zaniolo, of Roma, his senior debut.

"It's not difficult to see talent in Kean and Nicolo Zaniolo, so it's not a risk to pick them.

"There's plenty of quality among our young players. It's not difficult to understand that."

Mancini told Rai Sport that Italy's Group J rivals Finland, promoted from the third tier of the UEFA Nations League last year, proved useful opponents.

"It wasn't easy, as Finland clammed up straight away with five defenders, so it was difficult to break them down," Mancini said.

"We made a few mistakes early on, but did far better in the second half and created many more scoring opportunities."

Mancini backed Ciro Immobile to end his goal drought as the Lazio striker has now failed to score in his last 10 appearances for Italy.

Immobile did lay on an assist for Kean though and Mancini added: "When a striker seeks the goal, it doesn't arrive, but it will happen.

"It wasn't easy for Immobile, as he always has five or six players surrounding him. If anything, we should have spread the play better to create spaces."

Finland coach Markku Kanerva was impressed by Italy, but does not think Mancini's side will have it all their own way in the group.

"Italy are certainly the strongest team in the group, but Greece and Bosnia can also have a say," Kanerva was quoted on UEFA.com.

"Obviously, I'm disappointed with the result. It's a pity, especially for the first goal, because it came through a deflection."

Norwich striker Teemu Pukki squandered Finland's best chance when he mis-directed Robin Lod's cross early in the second half.

"We came close to equalising and maybe the result would have been completely different if we had scored that goal," Kanerva added. "Still, I think the result reflected what we saw on the pitch."


Click here for more stories about Roberto Mancini

Click here for more stories about Italy

Share this article now:
Italy's Nicolo Barella in action during a Nations League match with Portugal in November 2018
Read Next:
Italy's Nicolo Barella wary of Finland threat
>

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel
Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool31237170185276
2Manchester CityMan City30242479215874
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs30201957322561
4Arsenal30186663392460
5Manchester UnitedMan Utd30177658401858
6Chelsea30176750331757
7Wolverhampton WanderersWolves30128103836244
8Watford30127114244-243
9West Ham UnitedWest Ham31126134146-542
10Leicester CityLeicester31125144043-341
11Everton31117134342140
12Bournemouth31115154356-1338
13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle3198143140-935
14Crystal Palace3096153641-533
15Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2996143242-1033
16Southampton3079143450-1630
17Burnley3186173559-2430
18Cardiff CityCardiff3084182757-3028
19Fulham3145222970-4117
20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield3135231857-3914

Subscribe to our Newsletter


Transfer Talk Daily
Match previews - twice weekly
Morning Briefing (7am UTC)
Ultra close-up image of Kevin De Bruyne [NOT FOR USE IN ARTICLES]Get the latest transfer news, match previews and news direct to your inbox!

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel
Login, I already have my ad-free pass
Log in to customise Sports Mole
Buy ad-free access (show me the options)
Buy monthly ad-free access for £1.20/month
Buy yearly ad-free access for £12 (2 months free)
Settings - Logout - Manage your account
Settings - Logout - Manage your account