Sweden qualify as Italy miss out on FIFA World Cup

Sweden qualify as Italy miss out on FIFA World Cup

Sweden held on to force a goalless draw in the second leg at the San Siro to defeat the Italians 1-0 on aggregate in their Russian Federation 2018 play-off.

For the first time since 1958, the FIFA World Cup will not feature Italy.

After losing the first leg of their European play-off 1-0 to Sweden in Stockholm, Italy needed a winning performance back at a sold-out San Siro in Milan. We failed at something which also means something on a social level.

The Italian media has largely placed the blame for a poor qualifying campaign and dismal play-off attempt at the door of head coach Ventura, who was under contract until 2020.

Alessandro Florenzi tried an audacious volley that went a foot wide of Olsen's post, while Immobile came close at the near post but, ultimately, the Azzurri found no solutions to get back into the tie, and will miss out on the world finals for the first time in 60 years.

"I want to give a big hug to everybody who has always supported me, like Chiello [Giorgio Chiellini], Barza [Andrea Barzagli], Leo [Bonucci], Lele [Gabriele Oriali, team manager] and everybody who's shared these past 10 years with me".

"There is still a future for our football".

"Hopefully this year we can play better and win with the national team and Juventus".

Gianluigi Buffon appears to have confirmed that his Italy career is over following the nation's failure to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation. They made the Round of 16 in both 2006 and 2002, but since it's been a barren run for the Scandinavian nation who were unable to qualify for 2010 in South Africa or 2014 in Brazil.