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Mangia playing it cool ahead of U21 finals

Published: Thursday 24 January 2013, 12.00CET
Only when Italy arrive in Israel for this summer's finals will the "dream" of winning the competition start. Until then, coach Devis Mangia is not entertaining any grand thoughts.
 

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Published: Thursday 24 January 2013, 12.00CET

Mangia playing it cool ahead of U21 finals

Only when Italy arrive in Israel for this summer's finals will the "dream" of winning the competition start. Until then, coach Devis Mangia is not entertaining any grand thoughts.

Having built on the strong qualification foundations laid down by his predecessor, Devis Mangia is not about to make any bold predictions about how Italy will fare at this summer's UEFA European Under-21 Championship.

A run of five wins in six qualifying games under Ciro Ferrara meant Mangia found it "easy" to adapt to his new role when he took the reins last July. While the Azzurrini's subsequent displays and results, including a two-legged play-off victory against Sweden, have pleased the former US Città di Palermo coach – "I'm very satisfied" was his assessment of his tenure so far – he is not looking too far ahead.

"Let's see what we manage to achieve," he told UEFA.com when asked about his side's chances in Israel, where they face England, the hosts and Norway in Group A. "We aren't going into the tournament with any absolute clear objective.

"We are used to taking it match by match – that goes for the friendly games that we will play beforehand. Every match we play will be a moment of growth, where we can learn something and improve. Then when we arrive in Israel, the dream starts and we will see what happens."

For more from Mangia – who will turn 39 during the finals – on this and his plan to play "progressive football", watch the video above.

Last updated: 24/01/13 11.55CET

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