Italy’s stunning failure to qualify for back-to-back World Cups was the dominant headline throughout the March international break.
Aleksandar Trajkovski’s hopeful strike from distance in stoppage time broke Italian hearts as North Macedonia claimed a historic victory. Although, their fairytale was cut short a few days later by a Bruno Fernandes inspired Portugal.
Trajkovski’s winner triggered an outpouring of revisionism regarding the Nazionale. Suddenly, last year’s triumph at the Euros merely painted over the cracks, as the majority of Italians claimed that a revolution of the ‘system’ – no, not the Camorra – from the bottom up is necessary for Italy to evolve into a bonafide footballing superpower once more.
And perhaps they’re right. There’s no doubting that calcio has fallen way behind its contemporaries in regards to the development of youth and harbouring the gap between Primavera and senior football.
Anyway, that’s enough of that.
4 Juventus moments you might’ve missed from the March international break
The understandable fixation on Italy’s catastrophic failure means that some Juventino may be completely ignorant of how the rest of the Bianconeri stars fared throughout the March international break.
So, to ensure you’re up to date, here are four Juventus moments you might’ve missed from the past couple of weeks.
1. Alvaro Morata scores brace
Spain’s progression into the World Cup had already been secured by the time March rolled around. That meant Luis Enrique’s side partook in a pair of friendlies over the recent break.
Juventus forward Alvaro Morata started both outings despite a quiet game against Albania, which Spain eventually won 2-0, but Enrique’s faith in the mentally fragile forward paid off as he scored twice in the 5-0 trouncing of Iceland.
His first goal was a cool finish having been the beneficiary of an ingenious Carlos Soler dummy before his second arrived three minutes later from the penalty spot. Morata’s pair of strikes took his March tally up to five.
The 29-year-old will be in contention for Sunday’s gargantuan Derby d’Italia against Inter Milan.
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