Italy face tactical challenges because of injuries, suspension

BORDEAUX: Chameleon-like Italy have been lauded for their tactical suppleness at Euro 2016, but with several key absentees, coach Antonio Conte may need to reinvent them again for their quarter-final against Germany.

Recent victories, including the second-round triumph over defending champions Spain, have taken their toll, with midfielders Antonio Candreva and Daniele De Rossi training alone on Thursday because of groin and thigh injuries respectively.


Thiago Motta, a potential replacement for De Rossi, is also suspended from Saturday's game.

Italy's tactical innovations have been a highlight of the tournament, with Conte eschewing some of the national game's "traditional values". Known for their defensive qualities, the Italians have not been afraid to attack in France.

They defended intelligently to nullify Belgium in their opening 2-0 win. Their discipline was complemented by an offensive fluidity, as they modulated on the theme of 3-5-2 to become either a 5-3-2 without the ball or a 3-3-4 in possession.

He could use Giaccherini as a third forward alongside Eder and Graziano Pelle, with Florenzi and De Sciglio wide in a 3-4-3 formation.

"If we play as a team, with the sacrifice and determination we've shown, we can harm Germany," De Sciglio said.