The statistics paint an impressive picture of the form that Inter Milan midfielder Nicolo Barella showed for Italy against Ukraine yesterday.
Today’s print edition of Milan-based newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport, via FCInterNews, note that the 26-year-old Nerazzurri star showed impressive numbers on both sides of the ball.
Barella has been a regular for Italy for half a decade now.
The midfielder got his first chances in the Azzurri team under Roberto Mancini whilst he was still playing for Cagliari, in 2018.
And Barella’s summer 2019 move to Inter further enhanced his standing for the national team as well.
The Italian has become a key player helping Inter to win the Serie A title, the Coppa Italia and Supercoppa Italiana twice apiece, and to reach the Europa League and Champions League finals.
Similarly, Barella was a fixture in the Italy starting eleven as the Azzurri won EURO 2020.
Nicolo Barella Shines Statistically For Italy Vs Ukraine
Winning the Euros under Mancini was just the beginning for Barella in an Italy shirt, though.
The 26-year-old has continued to be the heartbeat of the Italian national team ever since then.
Disappointing failure to qualify for the recent World Cup marred the last couple years for Italy.
Therefore, qualification for the upcoming Euros to defend their crown was an absolute must for the Azzurri.
And Italy got the job done yesterday. Albeit in the nerviest of circumstances.
The Azzurri saw out a goalless draw against Ukraine.
That match saw the Ukrainians denied a penalty appeal for a late challenge by Roma midfielder Bryan Cristante on Chelsea’s Mikhailo Mudryk in stoppage time.
But Italy managed to limp to the finish line. They will be at the next Euros, this time with Luciano Spalletti on the bench.
And, the Gazzetta argues, Barella was the best player on the pitch on the night.
The Inter midfielder was not the reason for the Azzurri’s failure to score. Far from it, he created four goalscoring chances for his teammates.
But not just that, the 26-year-old also won the ball back an impressive seven times.