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Euro 2020: Italy vs Turkey - all the action as it happened

Italy begin Euro 2020 with a win, knocking three past a tired Turkey and playing with tempo and tenacity

Italy vs Turkey live blog
(Image: © Future)

Italy have won the opening game of Euro 2020 - and boy did they do it in style.

Read through our action to see the match as it happened. 



Team news


Domenico Berardi has scored in each of his past four international appearances and is expected to get into the side ahead of Federico Chiesa, while Lorenzo Pellegrini has picked up an injury. Marco Verratti is still recovering from a knee injury but is expected start in midfield with Manuel Locatelli. 


Turkey have the youngest average squad age in the entire tournament and don't have any major injury worries ahead of the opening match. Merih Demiral and Caglar Soyuncu are expected at the back with Burak Yilmaz leading the line

The game is being broadcast on BBC1 and BBC iPlayer tonight with an A-list punditry cast of Alan Shearer, Cesc Fabregas and Rio Ferdinand - find where to watch Italy vs Turkey here.



Donnarumma; Florenzi, Bonucci, Chiellini, Spinazzola; Barella, Jorginho, Locatelli; Berardi, Immobile, Insigne


Cakir; Celik, Demiral, Soyuncu, Meras; Yokuslu; Karaman, Tufan, Yazici, Calhanoglu; Yilmaz

So the news is that Marco Verratti is not quite match-fit enough to start for the Azzurri tonight. Jorginho is the natural no.6, with Locatelli and Barella and Locatelli shuffling as no.8s in the system. 

Immobile is preferred to Belotti in attack, while Chiellini and Bonucci are one of the oldest backlines in the tournament - they're 36 and 34, respectively. Donnarumma is 22 and making his tournament ahead of Italy's second-choice Salvatore Sirigu. 

Yilmaz, Yazici and Calhanoglu are the danger men for Turkey. Okay Yokuslu, who was on loan at West Bromwich Albion last season, is set to anchor in midfield. 

As expected for the Crescent Stars, Demirel and Soyuncu get the nod in defence ahead of Liverpool loanee Ozan Kabak. Another loan star from the Premier League last season, Cengiz Under, is on the bench from the off.

Italy vs Turkey odds

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Italy: 1/2
Draw: 3/1
Turkey: 7/1

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This is the first time Italy and Turkey have played each other since 2006, where they drew 1-1 in a friendly. The last time they faced each other in a competitive fixture was at Euro 2000, with Italy emerging as 2-1 winners. 

Both sides finished in the top two to advance to the knockout stages though. Turkey lost to Portugal while Italy reached the final, falling at the hands of France in extra-time.  

Looking at this Italy team, what strikes you most? Well, Rich Jolly has been analysing the Azzurri... 

Read why Italy's revival is even more remarkable without the a no.10 in the side.

So how good is Burak Yilmaz? The Turkey captain, who caught attention for firing the unfavoured Lille to Ligue 1 glory, is the no.9 tonight. Read our guide on how good the striker could be tonight...

In Turkey’s four appearances at the European Championships, they have lost all four of their opening games - including a 2-1 defeat to Italy at Euro 2000.

Despite that, they have still managed to qualify for the knockout stages on two of those occasions. 

Big night tonight for Giorgio Chiellini, tonight. Tonight, he joins both Gianluigi Buffon and Alessandro Del Piero in appearing at four separate European Championships. 

He's only 36, you know. He's probably got one or two more tournaments left in him. 

There'll be plenty of talk of Italian legends tonight - their captain is Chiellini and their manager is Mancini, after all. 

But who's the only man who played in the 1968 Euros win and the 1982 World Cup? Goalkeeping hero Dino Zoff - learn all about him with this piece on Zoff.

Andrea Bocelli is currently performing Nessun Dorma on the Stadio Olympico pitch. 

Emotional for anyone who remembers the last international tournament in Italy, the 1990 World Cup... but we're sure Gary Lineker is tearing up in memory of when the tenor performed this banger at the King Power Stadium in Leicester, following Leicester City's 2015/16 title win. Bellissimo! 

Beautiful performance.

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Two of the most passionate anthems in the competition today. Turkey have shown a lot of passion and character with theirs - but Italy are traditionally strong in this department, too.

After a laughably long intro, the Italian national gets underway, as the Azzurri side belt out Fratelli d'Italia like their lives depend on it. First blood to the blues in this contest, they've knocked Turkey out of the park.

As a sidenote, the light grey suits that Mancini and his coaching side are wearing look like classics already. 

KICK-OFF: It's a year later than planned but we are well and truly underway as Italy face Turkey in the first match of Euro 2020. Italy in the white, Turkey in the red. Let's go!

Italy have never lost at the Stadio Olimpico in a major tournament, World Cup and Euro combined (W6 D2). They also haven’t conceded a single goal in each of those last seven games.

2 min: CHANCE! Florenzi just got to the byline - no one thought he'd get there - and Immobile hits the ball into the side netting. A half chance but the first of the game. 

3 min: Turkey get the ball properly for the first time and Soyuncu boots it out. Possession could be hard to come by tonight.

5 min: Italy are looking patient and assured in possession. That midfield three can certainly hold onto the ball. They're passing it around with zip, though.

6 min: Chiellini has a mazy run from centre-back. If Turkey can counter when he marauds forwards, they could be in. The space is there to exploit...

9 min: As sure as Italy look in possession, Turkey look comfortable out of possession. Two well-drilled sides here.

10 min: Celik knocks the ball long to Yilmaz - that long ball looks to be a good outlet for them but Yilmaz's cross doesn't find anyone in the box.

14 min: What do we think of Italy's minimal new away kit, by the way? Holla @FourFourTwo, let us know.

16 min: CHANCE! Lorenzo Insigne tries to bend a shot into the top corner - but it goes horrible wide. 

20 min: Penalty appeal from Italy, as the ball hits Caglar Soyuncu around midrift. Don't ask, don't get, we guess...

21 min: CHANCE! What a save from Cakir. Chiellini rises to that one like a salmon from the river Tiber to head the corner towards top bins. Cakir tips it over the bar for another corner. 

More from Twitter...

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25 min: Okay Yokuslu has been very calm and composed in the no.6 role for Turkey tonight so far. Perhaps another Premier League side might take him after his West Brom spell last season?

Turkey had the joint best defensive record in qualifying for Euro 2020 alongside Belgium, shipping just three goals in ten matches. They're keeping it up so far. 

28 min: Barella and Yazici just clashed a little in the box. No foul, very little appeal. 

30 min: Yilmaz is offside once more. Despite their age, the Italy backline has the wisdom to know exactly when to step up. It's a lesson in defensive positioning. 

31 min: Cakir just had to punch a looping cross. Chiellini isn't happy about being flattened in the process. We believe we just lipread "Mamma mia".

32 min: CHANCE! Immobile connects with a cross to head wide. It was never threatening Cakir, in fairness. 

33 min: Italy's quick tempo has receded slightly. Both sides have hit long, aimless balls as the game settles into more of a game of chess. If chess was about throwing the pieces at the opponent, of course. 

34 min: CHANCE! Donnarumma has to make his first save from a cross. Italy, typically, bring the ball out leisurely. 

36 min: CHANCE! Insigne tries to swing another on in. Cakir catches. 

37 min: Cakir blasts the ball into Italy's half and out of touch. Is this a deliberate tactic to play long... or are they just very poor in distribution?

40 min: As the first half draws to a close, we've learned a few things. Turkey seem unwilling to use Hakan Calhanoglu to control, in favour of going very, very long (too long). Italy can still pass the ball around like the best of them. And both sides' strengths seem to lie in defence. 

42 min: CHANCE! Immobile wriggles free and smacks a low drive into Cakir's hands. The Azzurri are piling on the pressure. 

Senol Gunes is bouncing on the touchline, either in frustration or appreciation of his side's defensive shape. This is Gunes’ second major tournament taking charge of Turkey, following the 2002 World Cup. He led the nation to third place on that occasion, their best ever performance.

43 min: Spinazzola is incensed he didn't get a penalty after thwacking a cross in at Celik's hand, two yards away. VAR took about five seconds to say no to that. We're not used to that decisiveness in the Prem, are we? 

HALF-TIME: Italy been all over Turkey but haven't picked the lock. The Crescent Stars have been poor if truth be told; there's been no precision to the passing and no effort to test the ageing backline with an in-form Yilmaz. 

Despite that, it's been an intriguing contest at a good pace, so far. Let's hope we get a goal in the second half. 

Half-time quiz

Fancy testing yourself with a quiz this half-time? 

We're looking for every nation to ever qualify for the European Championship - six minutes to guess them all... 

Have we mentioned how old Chiellini is tonight? Last time... Christian Panucci became Italy’s oldest player to score at a Euros in 2008, at the age of 35 years and 62 days. If 36-year-old Chiellini scores, he’ll surpass that record. 

Burak Yilmaz has scored his last 13 penalties for club and country, with his last miss from the spot coming in March 2019 while playing for Turkey. Just in case you're wondering why he threw himself quite so threatrically in the box. 

Seriously though, the little car... that was excellent. Every game, please. 

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Is it bad that the two highlights of the Euros so far... are these? It's still early days, we guess.

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SECOND HALF KICKS OFF: And there's a substitution... Cengiz Under is on for Turkey. Yusuf Yazici off. Could be an enforced one at this early stage.

45 min: Giovanni Di Lorenzo is on too for the Italians. Alessandro Florenzo has gone off.

45 min: Italy start brightly again. Soyuncu slides in to clear. 

Despite playing 38 games in the European Championships, Italy have never scored more than two goals in a match.

They have also drawn more games than any other side in the tournament’s history, 16, while also recording eight nil-nil matches, the most in the tournament’s history. 

50 min: Umus Meras is struggling on the deck after a shove to the ribs. It seems the left-back is going to continue. 

50 min: CHANCE! Cengiz Under robs Jorginho and sprints on the break. With the angle tight, he slid the ball into Donnarumma's grasp - but it goes to show what Turkey are capable of on the break, tonight.

52 min: GOAL! Merih Demiral scores an own goal, as Domenico Berardi smashes a cross into the Turkish defender, which it he can only chest into his own net. Italy take the lead.

53 min: Well, now Turkey have to be much more positive in possession. Yilmaz has been island in attack tonight.

54 min: CHANCE! Spinazzola forces Cakir into a save. Immobile overhead kicks the rebound to no avail. 

56 min: Insigne has missed another chance, Italy have another corner and still, the Azzurri are cranking up the pressure cooker on Turkey. They ain't playing for no 1-0, lads. 

57 min: CHANCE! Locatelli bobbles an awkward shot, which Cakir saves. He's been the best player by a mile for the Crescent Stars.

Unless things change, Turkey are losing for the first time in 2021. 

Turkey have won five of their last ten games, including a 4-2 over the Netherlands in the 2022 World Cup qualifiers in March. They drew four more, losing just one of their ten most recent fixtures against Hungary.

However, they finished bottom of their UEFA Nations League group in League B, meaning they’ll be relegated for the next iteration of the competition. 

62 min: Italy are playing the ball beautifully, with Locatelli and Jorginho dropping to collect before starting neat attacks in front of Turkey's well-drilled defence. 

63 min: Ozan Tufan and Okay Yokuslu are off. Kaan Ayhan and Irfan Kahveci come on. That's the entire midfield switched out by Gunes. 

65 min: GOAL! Ciro Immobile fires in the rebound after Cakir saves Spinazzola's half-volley. A real poacher's goal and a memorable one for the man who plays his football in this very city. 

Wonder what Andy Roddick thinks of this one? Wonder no more. 

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FFT's very own Conor Pope was impressed by the prematch entertainment for this one.  

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70 min: Turkey's turn to assert dominance. They're not popping the ball around with the opposition's precision but they've started to throw more men forward when they attack. 

71 min: Barella, Locatelli and Jorginho have been excellent today, by the way. Who do you drop if Verratti's fit for the next game? None of them deserve to sit out on this showing.

72 min: An Italy free-kick from Insigne is hit low but into Yilmaz. Meanwhile, Manuel Locatelli just headed off. Roma midfielder Bryan Cristante is now onto the ground he plays his club football on.

74 min: CHANCE! Karaman can't get the flick onto a long ball. That would've made the last 15 tasty... 

75 min: Brentford's Halil Dervisoglu is coming on for Turkey, in place of Karaman. 

76 min: Spinazzola has been superb tonight, holding the width in Italy's attack, drifting into the box and providing crossing threat for the Italians. An unlikely star tonight?

78 min: GOAL! Lorenzo Insigne makes it three to the home side. Cakir's ball only ended up with Berardi, Italy play it from left to right, and Insigne is there to curl the ball into the net for the third. 

79 min: And that was the last contribution from Insigne in this one. The Napoli winger and Immobile are replaced by Federico Chiesa and Andrea Belotti. 

80 min: 28 games without defeat for the Italians tonight. The first time that they've scored three at a Euros. This is a big night for the Azzurri. 

Here's the moment that Lorenzo Insigne made it three with a sumptuous curling effort. It's been an onslaught - and it's been a magnificent effort from Italy. 

Lorenzo Insigne

(Image credit: Getty)

84 min: Domenico Berardi goes down from a clatter with Meras. He's replaced by peroxide prince, Federico Bernardeschi.

86 min: Turkey again lose the ball on the counter and Italy go again. All in all, a disappointing start to Turkey's Euros campaign - but one that will please Welsh eyes. 

87 min: YELLOW! Caglar Soyuncu is the first man in the book at Euro 2020, for leaving his elbow in Bernardeschi's chest when jumping for the ball. The Leicester centre-back does love the grittier side of the game, doesn't he?

88 min: YELLOW! Another Turkey booking. Dervisoglu lunges in on Nicolo Barella and sees yellow.

89 min: There was a moment not long ago when Turkey launched a ball forward and Donnarumma caught it. He threw it out to Bonucci, who casually slid a line-breaking pass from the centre-back position to split Turkey's press and reach Barella, before the Inter man skipped away. The two passes summed up the entire game. 

90 min + 1: Still, Italy are going for the jugular, pressing forward and keeping possession when they force Cakir to kick into touch. This has been masterful. 

90 min + 2: CHANCE! Giorgio Chiellini with a textbook sliding tackle to prevent Burak Yilmaz from staring down Donnarumma. The clean sheet is nearly complete too, now.