Italy didn’t qualify for the World Cup for the first time in 60 years. The administration of Italian football has been backward, racist and unable to adapt or see the problems that are in plain site. Having chosen a top level inexperienced national team coach in Giampiero Ventura to lead the national team after Antonio Conte the resulting disasters were almost unbelievably clear and many have been ignored for years before the current failure. The state of the Italian league and the larger questions facing Italian football deserve their own analysis of course.
The Serie A has fallen down the pecking order in European football, from its heights of the 1990s, but still features many stars of world football and is still ranked highly in UEFA tables.
Below is a list of some of the players that are likely to feature for their national teams this summer in Russia. The Azzurri are not going to be there but many Italian based players will be.
Medhi Benatia Defender Morocco 30
Juan Cuadrado Midfielder Colombia 29
Gonzalo Higuain Forward Argentina 30
Mario Mandzukic Forward Croatia 31
Arkadiusz Milik Forward Poland 23
Piotr Zielinski Midfielder Poland 23
Kalidou Koulibaly Defender Senegal 26
Radja Nainggolan Midfielder Belgium 29 (Player has been in and out of Belgium’s team under coach Roberto Martinez)
Aleksandar Kolarov Defender Serbia 32
Alisson Becker Goalkeeper Brazil 25
Ivan Perisic Winger Croatia 28
Yuto Nagatomo Defender Japan 31
Mauro Icardi Forward Argentina 24
Andre Silva Forward Portugal 22
Cristian Zapata Defender Colombia 31
Ricardo Rodriguez Defender Switzerland 25
Nani Winger Portugal 31
Sergej Milinkovic-Savic Midfielder Serbia 22
Emil Hallfredsson Midfielder Iceland 33