Italy and Spain face off again in a rematch of the Euro 2021 semifinal, and if it’s anything like that contest back in July it should be another high-quality, tightly contested affair between two of Europe’s best teams. Italy is ranked No. 5 in the world and enters as the reigning Euro champion, while Spain clocks in at No. 8 in the FIFA rankings.
Though Spain was arguably the better side in July, Italy prevailed in a penalty-kick shootout after a 1-1 draw. Italian goalkeeper Gigi Donnarumma came up with the big stops in a foreshadowing of the Euro final shootout against England. Italy’s triumph at the Euros helped extend an unbeaten run that has now reached a record 37 matches and counting.
However it finishes at the San Siro in Milan — Italy was the only one of the four Nations League semifinalists to bid to host the event — both teams will be back in action on Sunday. The semifinal winner will stay in Milan to play France or Belgium in the Nations League final. That title match will be preceded by the third-place game between the semifinal losers at Turin’s Juventus Stadium.
MORE: Everything you need to know about Nations League finals
Sporting News will follow the Italy-Spain match live and provide scoring updates, commentary and highlights as they happen.
Italy vs. Spain live score
Italy vs. Spain updates & highlights
(All times Eastern)
2:25 p.m.: To put the Gavi start in perspective: He was born a few months after Giorgio Chiellini made his Italy national team debut.
5 agosto 2004, nasce Gavi. 17 novembre 2004, Chiellini debutta in nazionale. Oggi saranno avversari. #ItaliaSpagna
— Filippo Ricci (@filippomricci) October 6, 2021
2:18 p.m.: Notable milestone for Italy center back Leonardo Bonucci:
2:15 p.m.: Italy out for warmups:
2:14 p.m.: We already have a big story of the game and we’re still 30 minutes away from kickoff:
Gavi starts for Spain and becomes the youngest debutante in the history of the Spanish NT, at 17 years and 62 days.
Luis Enrique showing his belief in a player he believes came go on to play 100 games for la selección. #ItalySpain
— Kay Murray (@KayLMurray) October 6, 2021
2:12 p.m.: This should add a layer of drama to tonight’s proceedings. The ex-AC Milan ‘keeper jeered by his former fans:
1:04 p.m.: Alvaro Morata can’t take the field with Spain this time, but the Italy-based forward made sure to visit his national team colleagues:
12:45 p.m.: Jerseys are already set up and ready to go for the 2:45 p.m. kickoff.
Italy vs. Spain: Starting lineups
Center forwards Ciro Immobile (Lazio) and Andrea Belotti (Torino) are out because of injury and so Mancini has opted for a “false nine.” Although he has promising Giacomo Raspadori (Sassuolo) and Moise Kean (Juventus), who are their replacements on paper, Italy will be counting on Juventus star Federico Chiesa to be the goal-scoring catalyst together with Lorenzo Insigne and Federico Bernardeschi, who all start from deep.
MORE: How Italy’s unbeaten run stacks up against history
Alessandro Bastoni, 22, also gets the start at center back over 37-year-old veteran Giorgio Chiellini.
Italy projected starting XI (4-3-3, left to right): Gigi Donnarumma — Emerson Palmieri, Alessandro Bastoni, Leonardo Bonucci, Giovanni Di Lorenzo — Marco Verratti, Jorginho, Nicolo Barella — Federico Bernardeschi, Lorenzo Insigne, Federico Chiesa
Spain will also not have a traditional center forward on the team with injuries leaving out Alvaro Morata and Gerard Moreno. Winger Dani Olmo (RB Leipzig), Marcos Llorente (Atletico Madrid) and Barcelona duo Jordi Alba and Pedri also are unavailable. The front three will include Mikel Oyarzabal, who has started the season strong with Real Sociedad.
The big surprise is Barcelona teenage midfielder Gavi, who was a surprise callup, being given the start and becoming the youngest-ever Spain player, breaking a mark set in 1936.
Spain projected starting XI (4-3-3, left to right): Unai Simon-GK — Marcos Alonso, Pau Torres, Aymeric Laporte, Cesar Azpilicueta — Gavi, Sergio Busquets, Koke — Mikel Oyarzabal, Ferran Torres, Pablo Sarabia
How to watch Italy vs. Spain
- Date: Wednesday, Oct. 6
- Time: 2:30 p.m. ET
- TV Channel: ESPN2
- Spanish-language TV: UniMas, TUDN
- Streaming: fuboTV (free 7-day trial)
The match will be broadcast in English (ESPN2) and Spanish (UniMas, TUDN) in the USA with both channels available to stream on fuboTV, which offers a free 7-day trial to new users. A reduced capacity sellout of 37,000 is expected at Milan’s San Siro.
Italy vs. Spain: Betting odds & prediction
Odds courtesy of DraftKings
Pick: Italy win or tie and over 1.5 total goals: -140
This semifinal boils down to which team is going to have the tougher time overcoming the various absences. It’s hard to ignore the quality that Spain will be missing without 4-5 starters in Marcos Llorente, Pedri, Gerard Moreno, Dani Olmo and Alvaro Morata. For that reason, the balance should tip in Italy’s favor, with the Azzurri potentially returning 10 of the 11 starters from the match against Spain in July, including the Azzurri’s established midfield trio.
There are enough in-form attackers on both sides that two goals should not be a reach for this game. Italy and Spain are strong attacking sides known for their ability to create scoring chances. They should not disappoint.
- Moneyline (90 minutes): Italy +120 / Draw +200 / Spain +280
- To Advance: Italy -170 / Spain +140
- Spread: Italy -0.5 (+115) / Spain +0.5 (-150)
- O/U 2.5 total goals: Over +145 / Under -190
- Both Teams To Score: Yes +110 / No -145