Football: Debacle against Italy sees Poland lose ground in Nations League

After a horrid performance, Poland lost against Italy 0:2 in the penultimate game of the UEFA Nations League Division A held in Reggio Emilia.

Since the very beginning it was clear that the Polish coach Jerzy Brzęczek would be satisfied with a draw. His team was pushed to deep defence and a goal for Italy seemed to be only a matter of time.

A reckless foul committed by Grzegorz Krychowiak saw Brzęczek’s hopes shatter when Jorginho converted a penalty in the 27th minute. Even a goal conceded could not influence the Polish style of play, as the Italians kept everything under control until the very end.

When a substitute Jacek Góralski was sent off in the 77th minute after a second yellow it was clear that nothing good would come for the Poles, as Domenico Berardi doubled Italy's lead in the 84th minute.

The visitors stood no chance and were overwhelmingly outclassed by the hosts, who took the top spot in Group 1, leapfrogging Poland and the Netherlands. The former fell to third place, but thanks to the latter’s victory over Bosnia & Herzegovina, the team which got relegated to Division B, they are guaranteed to play in the top division next season.

Poland failed to take a single shot on target in the entire game, the team also struggled in the buildup phase due to the high pressure from the Italians. Captain Robert Lewandowski, asked about the tactical plan and hints before the match, could not, or maybe did not want to say too much, preceding his reply with a few seconds of a meaningful silence.

In their sixth match, concluding the group competition, Poland will face the Netherlands on Wednesday at home.