France outplayed Italy 3-1 in a high-octane friendly clash at the Stadio San Nicola in Bari, ahead of their qualification campaigns for 2018 World Cup in Russia.
Anthony Martial opened the scoring for France in the 17th minute. World’s most expensive player Paul Pogba, whipped in a decisive through ball to beat the Italian defence and picked Martial who only had the keeper to beat. Martial rushed in forward before launching a powerful strike from 18 yards out to beat Buffon.
A brilliant build up between Eder and Pelle clinched the equaliser for Italy. Eder rushed in through the right flank and sliced in a cross into the top box to pick Graziano Pelle, who launched a well-timed strike from six yards to clinch the equaliser.
Minutes later Oliver Giroud put France ahead from a brilliant first time volley. Italy fumbled at the back and failed to clear away a set piece, which was headed back into the box by Kurzawa before Giroud found the net from a brilliant first-time volley.
After setting up the second goal, Kurzawa stepped up is game further to clinch the third goal for France.
This was Giampiero Ventura’s first match as the new Italy head coach after Antonio Conte’s departure. Italy is set to face Israel in their first World Cup qualifier on September 5, while France will fly off to Belarus to begin their World Cup qualifiers campaign.
David Silva scored a brace to help Spain thrash Belgium 2-0 in another friendly in Brussels.
The Manchester City star got on the end of a back-pass from Vitolo in the 34th minute before launching a well-struck first time effort to beat three Belgium defenders and goalkeeper Courtois.
Spain earned a penalty after Jordan Lukaku tripped down Vitolo inside the box. David Silva scored from the spot in the 62nd minute and put the game to bed for Spain.
Spain are set to lock horns with Liechtenstein in their first World Cup 2018 qualification match, while Belgium are set to face Cyprus.