Preview and Prediction
Gli Azzuri is scheduled to return to UEFA Nations League this weekend by hosting Bosnia Herzegovina, again, after both teams encountered in EURO 2020 qualifying round. In both previous games, Roberto Mancini’s men were still too superior for Edin Dzeko and Co with 5-1 win in aggregate. Such was a shame for the Balkan side which are now promoted to the top tier League A. This should be a chance for them to prove that they deserve to be there, and snatching points in this away fixture will be a perfect start.
Both teams’ latest news
Italy under the former Manchester City boss, Roberto Mancini, has been full of energy. He really takes advantage of the large pool of young stars in Serie A by selecting them for the current squad, including Everton forward Moise Kean, Federico Chiesa, AS Roma’s young gun, Nico Zaniolo and Napoli’s goalie Alex Meret. However, Mancini does not leave out the seniors Giorgio Chiellini and his teammate in Juventus Leonardo Bonucci plus still gives a chance for the 33-year old Sassuolo forward, Francesco Caputo and Cagliari goalkeeper Alessio Cragno to make his debut alongside Inter’s Alessandro Bastoni and Roberto Gagliardini, Luca Pellegrini and Manuel Locatelli.
Bosnia, on the other hand, has already had less star players compared to their opponent. What’s even worse, the playmaker Miralem Pjanic was withdrawn from the call-up due to being infected by covid-19. Thus, only Edin Dzeko, Sead Kolasinac and the goalie Asmir Begovic are the experienced figures left in the current squad.
Roberto Mancini is an example of modern Italian manager who prefers more progressive football instead of relying on the classic cattenaccio. He does make use of the local offensive talents by employing 4-3-3 formation, which surely suits them. Lorenzo Insigne, Ciro Immobile and Federico Chiesa are likely to be the main frontmen, supported by Jorginho, Lorenzo Pellegrini and Nico Barella in the midfield.
The newly appointed manager, Dusan Bajevic took the helm at Bosnia after his predecessor, the former Croatian star in 1990s Robert Prosinecki left the post. It will his first competitive game and he might employ more pragmatic tactical approach here. The 5-4-1 formation seems to reasonable option with Edin Dzeko as the lone striker. In the midfield, Edin Visca, Muhamed Besic and Nimes attacking midfielder Haris Duljevic will be the key on their attack.
Players to watch
The European top scorer last season, Ciro Immobile, is expected to score here to show that he could do the same for his country, as he did for his club. The Lazio man has only notched up 10 goals in 39 appearances. Some other key men to watch are the Napoli man, Lorenzo Insigne and Jorginho.
Bosnia’s top performer is surely Roma’s captain Edin Dzeko who has registered 58 goals in 107 caps. Another notable figure to watch is Istanbul Basaksehir man, Edin Visca.
Italy vs Bosnia Prediction
The absence of Pjanic and the better head-to-head record should be enough to show Gli Azzuri’s position here. They are bound to endure their positive record against Bosnia here, probably with a clean sheet as well.
As the clear favourite, Chiellini and Co are priced to win at 1.30, whereas Bajevic’s men’s odds to win are only at 9.00. The draw result is at the value of 5.20.