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Inter Milan duo combine to push Italy past United States

Wonder what it could have been like if they were playing all along?

Italy v USA - International Friendly
Matteo Politano of Italy scores a goal during the friendly match between Italy and USA played at Luminus Arena on November 20, 2018 in Genk, Belgium.
Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images

In the 93rd minute of what appeared to be a disappointing draw with the United States, Inter Milan midfielder Roberto Gagliardini found teammate Matteo Politano for a game-winner near the penalty spot.

The match was played in Genk, Belgium Tuesday night.

It was a match dominated by the Azzurri nearly from start to finish as the United States had a complete line-up change compared to its roster for a 3-0 loss to England over the weekend. Only Borussia Dortmund winger Christian Pulisic started both games.

Despite dominating possession in the first half, Italy failed to find a way past American goalkeeper Ethan Horvath.

But, in the second half, the Azzurri found its attack and started to press the United States thanks to Kevin Lasagna and Leonardo Bonucci combined to nearly put Italy on the board to start the half.

American defender Walker Zimmerman gave the United States what would likely be its best chance to score with a header off a set piece that nearly found the back post but was pushed away from starting goalkeeper Salvatore Sirigu.

In the 70th minute, Vincenzo Grifo blasted a shot from 20-yards out, but Horvath pushed away the attempt and around a minute later, Lasagna had his close-range attempt blocked away by the American keeper.

Things finally came together in the 93rd minute when Politano went back and forth through the American defense and was fed the ball by Gagliardini — both of whom were substitutes for this match and did not play in their first international match of this break, a 0-0 draw with Portugal at the Meazza — and finished from near the area.

Italy closed out the match with 17 shots compared to three for the United States. Of those 17, six were on target. The Azzurri had possession of the ball 73 percent of the match.


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