Italy 2-0 Northern Ireland: Azzurri off to a winning start after goals from Berardi, Immobile

Roberto Mancini-Italy

Italy commenced their World Cup Qualifiers campaign with a comprehensive win over Northern Ireland.

Italy have beaten Northern Ireland 2-0 to get off to a winning start in the World Cup Qualifiers.

Roberto Mancini went with the star duo of Bonucci and Chiellini in the defence while the midfield consisted of Jorginho, Marco Verratti and Lorenzo Pellegrini. Domenico Berardi was given the nod to start alongside Ciro Immobile and Lorenzo Insigne in the attack.

The selection of Berardi was justified after the young Italian provided the breakthrough in the 14th minute. After receiving the ball from Florenzi, the Sassuolo ace used his pace along the flanks to beat his defender before unleashing a shot to the nets. Berardi has now scored for Italy and in all of his last three games.

The 26-year-old is enjoying another productive season in Serie A this term, racking up 11 goals and four assists in 22 appearances. 

Ciro Immobile added to Berardi’s goal in the 38th minute and it turned out to be the decisive strike in the end.

It has been turning out to be quite an off-season for the Lazio star as he has struggled with fitness. However, he still has 19 goals to his name in all competitions and showed once again why he should be the starter for the national team.

Mancini’s men extended their unbeaten run to 23 games with the win and will face Bulgaria in their second game of the qualifiers.



Gianluigi Donnarumma, Emerson Palmieri, Giorgio Chiellini, Leonardo Bonucci, Alessandro Florenzi, Marco Verratti, Manuel Locatelli, Lorenzo Pellegrini, Lorenzo Insigne, Ciro Immobile, Domenico Berardi


Salvatore Sirigu, Alessio Cragno, Francesco Acerbi, Leonardo Spinazzola, Giovanni Di Lorenzo, Gianluca Mancini, Nicolò Barella, Matteo Pessina, Andrea Belotti, Federico Bernardeschi, Federico Chiesa, Vincenzo Grifo

Northern Ireland

Bailey Peacock-Farrell, Stuart Dallas, Jonny Evans, Craig Cathcart, Michael Smith, Paddy McNair, Ali McCann, Corry Evans, Steven Davis, Josh Magennis, Gavin Whyte


Conor Hazard, Liam Hughes, Shane Ferguson, Conor McLaughlin, Daniel Ballard, Ciaron Brown, Niall McGinn, George Saville, Jordan Thompson, Matty Kennedy, Kyle Lafferty, Shayne Lavery