h National teams

Italy is devastated after the defeat against Slovenia. © IIHF

Italy's golden generation is losing its shine

Italy's national team traveled to the U20 World Cup (1st Division) in Slovenia with great ambitions. After four tournament games it is clear: the dreams of promotion are giving way to bitter disillusionment.

Italy's U20 team is nominally stronger than it has been for many years. Many cracks are trained in the best youth leagues (Tommy Purdeller, Tommaso Madaschi, Edoardo Berti, Alessandro Segafreddo), play in the top Swiss league (Tommaso De Luca), in the ICE (Fabian Gschliesser) or take on key roles in the AlpsHL ( Alex Egger, Nicolò Remolato, Alan Lobis, Enrico Larcher). Not to mention Damian Clara, who is absent in Slovenia. But the cracks who are on the ice at the World Cup certainly don't live up to their praise.

Italy lost 500-1 to the host nation on Friday in front of around 5 spectators in Bled. While the Slovenians are now playing in the “final” against Ukraine for tournament victory and the associated promotion, this dream has shattered for the Azzurrini. After the overtime defeat against Ukraine On Thursday they absolutely needed a win to maintain a chance of first place. Instead, like last year, only the bronze medal remains.

Title dream has shattered

Italy offered the palest performance of the tournament on Friday - and that for almost the entire duration of the game. The technically adept Slovenians, who had already been considered the toughest opponents in advance, quickly made things clear: Lovro Kumanovic used unusual space in the slot to make it 1-0 (2nd), Filip Sitar increased the score to 2-0 (15th minute). ). It wasn't just in this scene that the azure defense let goalie Berti down. He didn't look the best when Anze Zezelj conceded the third goal from close range (34'). Segafredo had previously reduced the score to 1:2 with a counterattack goal.

Swiss legionnaire Edoardo Berti had to reach behind him five times in the Italy goal. © IIHF

Although the Azzurrini were better in the game in the second third and repeatedly managed to exploit their offensive qualities, persistent inaccuracies and mistakes in defense definitely put the opponent on the road to success. After the second break, Italy's defense was easily outplayed by Sitar to make it 4-1, and Mark Sever's 5-1 in the power play was again a rebound goal.

Now for third-placed Italy in the final game on Sunday (16 p.m.) against bottom-placed Poland, it's all about a somewhat conciliatory conclusion.

U20, B World Cup – 4th matchday:

Slovenia – Italy 5:1
Slovenia: Kavcic (Dukaric), Hebar-Percic, Podrekar-Slibar, Tursic-Bohinc, Freser; Langus-Sitar-Sever, Zezelj-Bericic-Crnkic, Kumanovic-Lesnicar-Mahmutovic, Percic-Crepinsek-Spari, Freser.
Coach: Sivic

Italy: Berti (Rindone); Albis-Tolomelli, Prast-Larcher, Lacedelli-Nitz, Gorgone; Girardi-Gschliesser-Purdeller, Segafredo-Lobis-De Luca, Remolato-Egger-Madaschi, Covelli-Zandegiacomo-Manganelli, Garau.
Coach: De Bettin

1:0 Lovro Kumanovic (1.25), 2:0 Filip Sitar (14.59), 2:1 Alessandro Segafredo (21.16), 3:1 Anze Zezelj (33.34), 4:1 Filip Sitar (40.13), 5:1 Mark Sever (50.02)

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