Italy 0-0 Cameroon
An experimental Italy side, featuring two debutants, failed to find the net against Paul Le Guen's Cameroon, with a goalless draw in Monaco kicking off the Azzurri's schedule of three friendly games before this summer's FIFA World Cup.
With Marcello Lippi taking a last chance to try out new players before naming his provisional squad for the finals in South Africa, AS Bari defender Leonardo Bonucci and Cagliari Calcio winger Andrea Cossu made their debuts in the starting lineup, with a 3-4-3 formation being deployed. Italy made a slow start, but picked up the pace after the interval, though Cameroon goalkeeper Souleymanou Hamidou – who plays in Turkey for Kayserispor – helped deny the Azzurri victory in their 700th international game.
Giorgio Chiellini had the ball in the net after 14 minutes, but his effort was ruled offside. Antonio Di Natale's right-footed shot from the left was subsequently blocked by Hamidou, as the first half failed to produce many chances. Udinese Calcio striker Di Natale was a menace again after the break, with his powerful strike following a run from the right causing Hamidou significant difficulty, but while he tried his luck again minutes later, his effort was deflected wide. Italy face Mexico and Switzerland in their next friendly fixtures.
©UEFA.com 1998-2017. All rights reserved.