Italy produced a brilliant performance to ensure they ended up on the right side of the football results during the third-place playoff of the Nations League. Their win provided some solace after their 37 matches unbeaten streak ended in the semi-finals against Spain. After a goalless first half, Nico Barella scored a brilliantly struck volley to put the European Champions ahead before Dominic Berardi scored from the penalty spot in the 65th minute. Belgium grabbed a consolation goal with four minutes left of regulation time through Charles De Ketelaere.

Managers Reaction

Spain defender Cesar Azpilicueta: “We were the better team but the score says different. We’re disappointed. Of course we wanted to finish in a different way but it’s how football works and we’ll learn from this.” he added. “The referee is there to make decisions but I’m more disappointed is that the referee who makes the decision isn’t Mr Anthony Taylor, who was here, it’s the one who is in the VAR. The monitor is there to use it. I don’t know why he doesn’t go to the monitor and see by himself if it’s deliberate play or not.”

France midfielder Paul Pogba: “I’m very happy. This trophy was really not easy after a Euro where we should have done better. We came back with two beautiful games, the first one against Belgium and the second against Spain, two beautiful teams. We got the cup and we got the win and we’re really really happy.”

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