2019 Women’s World Cup Qualification (UEFA) – Group 6: Italy brush aside Romania

Italy Women's National Team defeated a resilient Romania side 3-0 in their third qualifier for the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup.

2019 Women’s World Cup Qualification (UEFA) – Group 6: Italy brush aside Romania
Italy reacting after scoring against Romania. PHOTO: Figc.it
3 0
Italy: L. Giuliani; S. Gama (45 L. Boattin), E. Linari, S. Iannella (14 V. Bergamaschi); C. Salvai; M. Rosucci; C. Girelli; I. Mauro (84 D. Sabatino); E. Bartoli; B. Bonansea' A. Galli.
Romania: A. Paraluta; A. Corduneanu (62 M. Nagy); I. Bortan; T. Meluta; M. Ficzay; A. Giurgiu; L. Rus; A. Voicu; C. Dusa (70 C. Carp); M. Ciolacu (77 A. Herczeg); B. Goder.
SCORE: 1-0, min.51, Girelli. 2-0, min.76, Girelli. 3-0, min.78, Bonansea.
REFEREE: Karolina Radzik-Johan (POL)

Italy marched on in Group 6 of the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup qualifications after defeating Romania 3-0 at the Stadio Teofilo Patini of Castel di Sangro. 

Three wins, nine points, nine goals scored and three straight clean sheets are the numbers of Milena Bertolini's team in their first outings in this qualification campaign as they aim to punch their tickets for France 2019, for their first World Cup participation since the 1999 edition.

Impressive display

Twenty years of missing World Cup participation is an extremely poor record for a nation which is hoping to widen its horizons in women's football and which is obviously considered as one of the biggest nations in world football. 

After defeating Romania 1-0 in their previous game, they faced the Balkan side once again at home striving to take all points home. 

As expected, the Romanians opted for an aggressive and physical approach and they were making it difficult for the home side to create spaces between their lines.

Adding to Italy's frustrations were the first half injuries of Sandy Iannella and skipper Sara Gama who had to be replaced.

Further updates on their conditions are still to be revealed by the Italian FA.

Nonetheless, the half-time pep talk by Attilio Sorbi, who was replacing Milena Bertolini for this match who could not be present in the dug-out due to family reasons, looked to have ignited the Italians as they were much brighter after the change of ends. 

Cristiana Girelli grabbed a brace while the usual Barbara Bonansea topped her impressive display with a late goal to seal the points for Le Azzurre. 

Italy's next fixture will be a tricky test away at Portugal on November 28 and prior that important fixture, they will hope to have recovered back the likes of Marta Carissimi and Alia Guagni who were not available for this game, and also Iannella and Gama or at least one of them. 

Italy in Group 6:

September 15, 2017: Italy vs Moldova 5-0

September 19, 2017: Romania vs Italy 0-1 

October 24, 2017: Italy vs Romania 3-0.

Standings: Italy 9 points (3 matches played); Belgium 9 (3); Moldova 0 (2); Romania 0 (3); Portugal 0 (1). 

Italy's next fixtures:

November 28, 2017: Portugal vs Italy

April 6, 2018: Moldova vs Italy

April 10, 2018: Italy vs Belgium

June 8, 2018: Italy vs Portugal

September 4, 2018: Belgium vs Italy