Inter Milan midfielder Nicolo Barella has won praise for his “unplayable” performance for Italy in their EURO 2024 comeback win over Albania.

Today’s print edition of Milan-based newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport, via FCInterNews, award the 27-year-old Nerazzurri midfielder a scored of 7.5/10 in the player ratings for the match.

It did not even look certain that Barella would be able to start yesterday’s match.

The Inter midfielder had missed both of Italy’s warmup friendlies through injury. He had just made his return to full training a couple days before the EURO 2024 opener.

But if there was any lack of fitness on Barella’s part, it certainly wasn’t evident in his display against Albania.

As it turned out, Italy needed the Inter midfielder at something like his best.

The Azzurri went 1-0 down before the clock had even hit one minute.

But Barella was an inspirational figure and driving force for his country as they completed a comeback to get their group stage off to the start that they’d have hoped for.

Nicolo Barella The Driving Force For Italy Vs Albania At EURO 2024

Naturally, Barella’s goal was the highlight reel moment from the former Cagliari midfielder.

The 27-year-old could not have struck the ball much better from outside the box.

Former Lazio keeper Tomas Strakosha had essentially no chance of keeping Barella’s effort out.

That goal, Italy’s second, proved to be the winner.

But it was not just the goal from Barella. Far from it.

The Nerazzurri midfielder put in a tireless shift in the midfield battle.

From assisting Jorginho and the backline in the buildup phase, to getting forward into the final third, to competing physically with the Albania midfield without he ball, Barella did it all.

And it was not just energy from Barella.

The 27-year-old provided crisp passing, and showed his technical skill in abundance as Albania players could never knock him off the ball.

Particularly in the first half, Barella lit up the match. He was right at the heart of Italy’s most positive spells.