2023 Nations League Review: Italy defeat Netherlands to claim Bronze

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2023 Nations League Review for the 3rd and 4th play-off

Italy won the bronze medal in this edition of the UEFA Nations League by defeating the Netherlands 3-2. 

This victory extended Italy’s unbeaten streak against the Netherlands to eight matches. After Italy’s loss to Spain in the semi-finals, coach Roberto Mancini commented that his team lacked great forwards. However, Federico Dimarco proved him wrong by scoring a spectacular goal just six minutes into the match, showing that you don’t need to be a great forward to score goals. The goal left Mancini surprised and impressed as the Netherlands were unable to match Italy’s performance.

The Netherlands were quickly overwhelmed by Italy, who scored their second goal in the first half. However, there was some luck involved as Wilfried Gnonto’s shot deflected and fell perfectly for Davide Frattesi to score. The Netherlands needed a miracle to win and were frustrated when Cody Gakpo missed a great chance to reduce the deficit before halftime.

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During halftime, whatever was said in the Dutch dressing room seemed to have an effect as Denzel Dumfries and other Dutch players attempted to score early in the second half. However, Gianluigi Donnarumma, the Italian goalkeeper, saved Dumfries’ powerful shot from a distance, showing the resilience of Italy’s defense. Nevertheless, Steven Bergwijn managed to score and give hope to the Dutch fans inside FC Twente’s stadium.

However, the Netherlands’ optimism quickly faded as Italy scored their third goal, breaking Dutch hearts. The Dutch team tried to equalize but were caught off guard when Federico Chiesa scored on a counterattack. 

Chiesa scored Italy’s last goal

The Netherlands thought they had a chance when Wout Weghorst scored, but VAR confirmed that he was offside, leaving the Dutch to accept their fate. Italy, on the other hand, will be satisfied with the bronze medal, considering they had been absent from consecutive World Cup finals.

Weghorst’s goal was ruled out for offside

Despite salvaging some pride with a consolation goal in stoppage time, the Dutch had a frustrating afternoon and were disappointed to finish in last place in the final stage.

READ ALSO: 2023 Nations League Review: Joselu sends Spain to the UEFA Nations League finals

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