The stage was set for a hero to step up and win the hearts of their nation at Wembley stadium.
Saturday night noticed new Euro 2020 favourites Italy tackle underdogs Austria, in a sport which ought to have been routine for the swashbuckling Azzurri.
It was removed from straight-forward, nevertheless. After 90 minutes, Italy and Austria have been deadlocked. 0-0. Roberto Mancini dipped his hand into his bag of tips, and pulled out the joker of the pack: Federico Chiesa.
The Juventus star is electrical, a live-wire, a lit fuse, and subsequently, extremely unpredictable and erratic. These traits make him each a supervisor’s dream, and their nightmare. Are you able to belief him to suit right into a system? Or will he unsteady the entire ship?
It is a threat that have to be taken, at some stage. On 84 minutes, Mancini turned to his joker and requested for some magic.
On 95 minutes, he delivered.
It was a second of pure brilliance, worthy of breaking the firmest of deadlocks.
Leonardo Spinazzola, one other of Italy’s heroes, floated a stunning ball out from the left to the proper, simply begging for somebody to convey it down and take benefit. Chiesa sensed it was his second, controlling the ball together with his brow, chopping inside a defender and putting his head over the ball.
The winger smashed a shot with all his would possibly, and positive sufficient, it careered previous Daniel Bachmann and into the again of the online.
Chiesa wheeled away, celebrating with all the fervour and want that you just’d anticipate from a full-blooded, dedicated Italian.
It was a aim that despatched the sport bursting into life. Matteo Pessina put Italy 2-0 forward, and Sasa Kalajdzic then acquired Austria again inside one.
Chiesa later confirmed his extra irritating aspect, racing clear via with the ball and demonstrating some naivety, shedding possession as a substitute of retaining it, and permitting their opponents yet one more chew on the cherry in injury-time.
In the end, it wasn’t to be for Austria, and Chiesa ended the night time because the hero. His aim despatched a big message to his coach, and despatched a thunderbolt via Italian hearts all over the place. He could also be unpredictable, however he’s field workplace.