Sports Desk, Jun 20 (EFE).- Italy prevailed 1-0 Sunday over Wales to qualify for the knockout stage of Euro 2020 as the Group A winner, while the Dragons are going through as the second-place team despite skipper Gareth Bale’s squandering a golden opportunity.
With the Azzurri already assured of advancing after winning their first two matches, coach Roberto Mancini decided to rest eight starters for the game in Rome against Wales.
And it was one of the subs, Matteo Pessina, who got the goal, redirecting Marco Verratti’s free-kick to put Italy ahead in the 39th minute.
The post stopped Federico Bernardeschi from making it 2-0 eight minutes into the second half before Wales went down to 10 men with the sending off of Ethan Ampadu, who was shown a red card for a late, studs-out challenge on Bernardeschi with 35 minutes left.
The Welsh continued to press for a goal and Joe Rodon’s header across goal found Bale unmarked at the far post in the 76th minute, but the national side’s all-time leading scorer sent his shot over the cross-bar.
Italy, who extended their unbeaten streak to 30 matches, have not conceded a goal in the last 1,000+ minutes of play. EFE am/dr