|The National Squad and Germany 2006||
On July 16th 2004, Marcello Lippi was appointed Head Coach of the Italian National Squad. Despite the debut friendly match in Iceland was not a very good omen, the path towards the World Cup in Germany ended up to be full of success, and Azzurri managed to qualify straight away.
Although there was not much hope in good results during the World Cup, Lippi’s National Squad started to show their potential as early as March 2006, during a friendly match against Germany: a staggering 4-1 victory with a team showing a good game and an excellent team spirit.
The World Cup immediately started with a victory against the tough squad of Ghana, followed by a 1-1 draw against U.S.A. (the only goal in play scored against Azzurri during this competition) and a victory against Czech Republic that allowed the team to go on in the competition.
During the round of 16 and the quarter-finals, the team proved to be solid, first taking Australia and then Ukraine out. However, the true masterpiece of this group is completed in the semi-finals: in a stadium packed with German supporters, Lippi’s men managed to win 2-0 against the home team.
In the final awaits one of the bugbears of latest years: France. The match was very tense and after 120 minutes of draw, a penalty shoot-out was contested.
Once in the whole history of our National Squad, the penalty shoot-out was favourable to us: Lippi led Italy to win its fourth World Cup!
After the joy and celebrations for this victory, the coach refused to renew his contract with FIGC and left the National Squad.