By Izuchukwu Okosi
Italy defeated Belgium 2-0 in the second Group E match of the Euro 2016 on Monday night at Stade de Lyon to climb to the top of the log after the day’s earlier game, a 1-1 draw between Republic or Ireland and Sweden.
The Belgians have been declared the most promising team by observers but they met a very strong Italian side on Monday.
Italy scored in the run of play in the 32nd minute when Emmanuele Giacherreni beat an offside trap to bury home a long pass from Leonardo Bonucci deep inside the box, producing an accurate strike which went into the bottom right corner.
Graziano Pelle was the quickest inside the box and leapt to connect with a cross from the corner kick seven minutes after the Azzurris scored, the Southampton striker’s fine header flying narrowly wide of the left post.
Thibaut Courtouis produced a one-hand save to deny Ciro Immobile who unleashed a powerful shot as the Italians searched for a second goal in the 86th minute.
But Pelle displayed great technique to volley home a superb pass and make the result 2-0 in the added time of second half, just before the whistle went..