Former manager Arrigo Sacchi, who led Milan to European glory and coached Italy between 1991 and 1996, gave a very critical analysis of the state of Italian football.
“The problem is serious. Italian football suffers from a cultural backwardness, there are no innovative ideas. Other countries are evolving and we’ve been stuck for 60 years. I say it openly: the coach and the players are the least guilty. The problem is institutional,” said Sacchi, who led Italy to the 1994 World Cup final, losing to Brazil on penalties.
For the 75-year-old former coach, winning the last European was nothing but a ‘wonderful exception’-
The president of Italy’s Serie A also felt that Italy’s failure to qualify for the World Cup showed that changes were needed in that country’s football.
“The failure to qualify for the final phase of the World Cup is a failure of all Italian football, which must motivate serious reflection and a change of paradigm,” said Lorenzo Casini.
Italy missed the 2018 World Cup but won a European title won less than a year ago. Favored to win Group C at the World Cup qualifying stage in Qatar, they finished behind Switzerland and found themselves relegated to the play-offs, where they were surprisingly beaten at home by North Macedonia.