Former Inter midfielder Benoit Cauet has criticised the state of Italian football after the national team failed to qualify for the World Cup, and felt it started from Serie A.

The Azzurri were left stunned as they lost to North Macedonia in a playoff match in March to miss out on a second successive World Cup, less than one year after winning Euro 2020 at Wembley.

In an interview with Italian radio outlet 1 Station Radio earlier today, and as reported by, the former Nerazzurri midfielder voiced his concerns about Italian football’s future, whilst imagining how coach Roberto Mancini could have fared had the Azzurri made it to the tournament in Qatar.

“Italy would have achieved great goals. Missing out once once can happen, but historically for a nation like Italy, not participating in the World Cup is really something strange,” the ex-Paris Saint-Germain player claimed.

“A little something needs to be revised, but it’s been a discussion that has been going on for years, especially as regards to the Primavera teams and the excessive number of foreigners.

“Italian football has lost it’s identity, which only emerged when they won the European Championship,” Cauet went on.

With Italy determined to end their barren run on the world stage, Cauet urged clubs in Serie A to focus on developing young players and making the most of their academies.

“We need to create a law capable of finding a working method applied by all teams and youth sectors to unearth the real footballing value of Italians.

“This solution is being sought everywhere, but no measure has yet been found to relieve Italy. The national team has won many World Cups, it’s a shame not to see them in this edition of the tournament,” he concluded.

Cauet joined Inter from PSG in 1997 and scored seven goals in 147 appearances for the Nerazzurri, whilst helping them to win the UEFA Cup in his debut season.

He moved on to Torino in 2001, and Como in 2002, before returning to France with Bastia the following year.