Italy got their UEFA European Under-21 Championship qualifying campaign up and running as a pair of second-half goals secured victory in Nicosia.
The 2013 finalists were brought back down to earth with a 3-1 home defeat by Belgium in their Group 9 opener on Thursday, but dominated throughout against Cyrpus. Indeed, strikes from Francesco Fedato and Riccardo Improta, who both started on the bench, condemned the hosts to their third loss in four games.
A dizzying tone was set from the off as Christian Battocchio was denied by Zannettos Mytidis before Samuele Longo missed the target for the visitors. Mytidis needed to be on constant alert and produced an outstanding save from Andrea Belotti's low shot midway through the first half, but half-time replacement Fedato broke the deadlock after the break. On 67 minutes the forward found space in the area and drove powerfully into the net.
Cyprus never seriously threatened a reply and Improta secured the points in added time with a beautiful arcing shot that found the corner. A trip to Belgium is the next assignment for Luigi Di Biagio's men on 14 October.
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