Italy broke an 80-year-old record with a comfortable victory away to Bosnia and Herzegovina, notching their tenth consecutive triumph under coach Roberto Mancini.
Lazio centre back Francesco Acerbi scored a screamer to give gave Italy the lead midway through the first half when he turned his marker inside out with a deft touch before drilling home emphatically into the bottom corner. It was a popular goal among his teammates and one that even strikers would have been proud to score.
Napoli's diminutive playmaker Lorenzo Insigne added a second before the break with a low finish and Mancini's men were in cruise control in Zenica.
Napoli striker Andrea Belotti secured the win with a superb first-time finish from the edge of the box to take his personal international tally to nine goals.
There were impressive individual displays from Inter Milan's Nicolò Barrella, who laid on two assists, and Brescia's much-talked-about talent Sandro Tonali, who was handed his first start in an Italy jersey. Teenager Tonali looked especially comfortable in the heart of Italy's engine room, while 22-year-old Barrella's fine form for Inter has been well and truly transferred onto the international stage.
Italy is already confirmed as Group J winners with one game remaining in qualifying, while Bosnia-Herzegovina must be content with a playoff place.
📊 Bosnia 0-3 Italy: Azzurri dominate the key stats
- Midfielder Gaetano Castrovilli and goalkeeper Pierluigi Gollini made their international debuts for Italy.
- Italy has won their last ten matches and is unbeaten in 13 games (W11). They had never recorded a ten-match winning streak before tonight.
- Italy has racked up 28 goals in their last nine matches after scoring only 14 in their previous 18 games.
- Italy has only conceded three goals in their last 12 matches.
- Italy is now unbeaten in 39 UEFA European Championship qualifiers (W33 D6), since a 3-1 away defeat by France on 6 September 2006, the longest unbeaten run by any nation in EURO qualifiers.
- Ciro Immobile and Andrea Belotti both scored their ninth international goals for Italy.
📲 Follow Croatia vs Slovakia live on Futaa tonight as Euro 2020 qualifying action reaches the business end.