Legendary Italy striker Luigi Riva hailed the “beautiful work” of national coach Roberto Mancini on the eve of their Euro 2020 opener against Turkey in Rome.
Riva was a member of the Azzurri’s only European Championship winning team 53 years ago, scoring in the final against Yugoslavia in Rome’s Stadio Olimpico.
After a 1-1 draw two days earlier in the first leg, Riva scored the opening goal as they lifted their only European trophy thanks to a 2-0 win.
“It was a beautiful atmosphere but when I scored I was mostly afraid I was offside,” recalled the 76-year-old, who remains Italy’s all-time leading goalscorer with 35 goals in 42 appearances between 1965 and 1974.
It was not his most important goal, Riva prefering the one he scored in the 1970 World Cup semi-final 4-3 victory over West Germany in Mexico.
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