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Monday Evening Ticker: Mancini says Italy shouldn’t field dual nationals; Skrtel facing FA charge; and more

RobertoManciniManchesterCity5 (Getty)


When it comes to Italy’s national team, Roberto Mancini has some strict views.

The Inter Milan manager said he does not believe Palermo’s Franco Vazquez, who was born in Argentina, and Brazilian-born Sampdoria striker Eder should have been picked for the Italian team by manager Antonio Conte. Mancini made his feelings known at a meeting of Serie A clubs on Monday.

“The Italian national team must be Italian,” Mancini told reporters. “Those who aren’t born in Italy but have distant relatives shouldn’t be called up, that’s my opinion.”

Eder has scored eight goals for Sampdoria this season, helping the club to a fourth-place position in Serie A. Palermo sits 11th with Vazquez on seven goals this season. Both could make their debuts for Italy against either Bulgaria or England.

There was no place in the team for Toronto FC striker Sebastian Giovinco.

Here are some more news and notes for your Monday evening:


England’s Football Association has taken a closer look at Liverpool defender Martin Skrtel’s actions at the end of his club’s match against Manchester United.

Skrtel has been charged with violent conduct by the FA after he appeared to stamp on Red Devils goalkeeper David De Gea, who had charged down a through ball intended for the Slovakian in the 95th minute of Sunday’s game. A three-game ban could follow for Skrtel.

That would leave Liverpool without its influential central defender for league games against Arsenal and Newcastle, as well as the FA Cup quarterfinal replay against Blackburn on April 8.

Skrtel has until the end of Tuesday to respond.


Already with a majority of World Cup qualification spots, UEFA is looking to hand its continent more.

Gianni Infantino, UEFA general secretary, said he expects Europe to have at least one more spot in future World Cups after it will have 14 nations at the 2018 tournament in Russia. The recent success of Italy, Spain and Germany warrants the move, he said.

“I think there is a big chance that we have more than 13, because if you look at it objectively, 19 of the top 32 ranked associations are European,” Infantino said, referring to the FIFA rankings. “The last three winners of the last three World Cups were three European teams, so I think it’s absolutely objective and fair to be asking for one more position only.”

Infantino continued to say UEFA could request more than just one additional spot than the current 13, but that one more spot is “a good sign to the sporting merit.”


Anti-corruption prosecutors in Spain are not taking the charges against Barcelona bosses lightly.

Jail time has been requested for Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu and his predecessor, Sandro Rosell, who face tax evasion charges over the transfer of Brazilian attacker Neymar in 2013. Up to 27 months in jail has been requested by prosecutors for Bartomeu, while Rosell would get seven years since he also faces embezzlement charges.

In addition, Barcelona would be fined tens of millions of Euros if prosecutors’ wishes are granted.


Both Celtic and Inter Milan face fines from UEFA after their Europa League clash. (REPORT)

FA Chairman Greg Dyke wants to introduce new rules to encourage the growth of young English players. (REPORT)

Former Arsenal and Barcelona player Giovanni van Bronckhorst will become the next manager at Feyenoord. (REPORT)


  1. Also by Italian law the players Mancini is referring to were Italian Citizens at birth via their ancestry (iure sanguinis) they just had to reclaim their citizenship. Italian law is based on blood line for citizenship. Mario Balotelli who was born in Italy could not become Italian until he was 18. What is Mancini’s opinion on him?

    • Rossi is Italian. What Mancini said ““The Italian national team must be Italian,” Mancini told reporters. “Those who aren’t born in Italy but have distant relatives shouldn’t be called up, that’s my opinion.”…doesn’t apply to him becuase BOTH his parents are native Italians. He is not like Thiago Matta who had 1 Italian grand-parent.

      • “Those who aren’t born in Italy….”
        Rossi was born in the US so Ryan’s comment does apply.

      • Anthony, don’t put words in Mancini’s mouth. He clearly says, “those who aren’t born in Italy”, so Ryan’s comment is appropriate. Doesn’t matter anyway since Mancini isn’t actually the Italian national team coach.

      • Ive always found it funny how someone can read something clearly stating one thing and still not understand it while claiming it says the exact opposite lol. Truly talented.

      • What is clear about what Mancini said? He says only Italians should be called up to the national team. Everyone called up to the Italian National team is Italian. He said they should only be born in Italy. So is he saying if one of his sons plays for Manchester City and marries an English girl and his grandchild is born there they can’t play for the Italian national team? One of the players called up by Italy has a mother that was born in Italy, why is he not Italian enough?

        “Vàzquez also holds Italian citizenship, as his mother was born in the Italian city of Padua.”

    • Mancini is pretty much right. I don’t agree you have to born somewhere to be a member of that country but “dual nationals” with no meaningful connection to a country make a mockery of international football. The USMNT is an extreme example but Diego Costa, Eder, etc. show that other countries do it too. If you can just recruit players to your national team why bother having international football?

      • As long as they have citizenship of a country, they have the right to represent that country regardless of where they were born and/or raised. Eusebio and Di Stephano are revered in Portugal and Spain, even though they were born and raised in Mozambique and Argentina, respectively. Di Stephano came to Spain, when he was 27 and Eusebio was 18 when he arrived to Portugal to play for Benfica. Did these two make a mockery of international football? I don’t think so.

      • I believe if it’s within the laws of the land that you are eligible for a given country’s citizenship and represent their national team, you are entitled to do so. The children of US servicemen and women – having lived their entire life abroad – have just as much right to play for the USA as does someone born and raised in Topeka, Kansas.

        However – where I do agree with Mancini and Slow – is that you shouldn’t need to be “sold” as to which country you will represent (if you have dual citizenship). Klinsman is a prime example of this NCAA-style recruitment where he’s actively seeking out players who are eligible, and then basically bribing them (i.e. Julian Green) to be a sort of “hired gun” to play for the USA. While some players might truly be torn, I believe that is a decision the player has to make on their own – without the car salesman pitch from each side.

        If dual nationals choose to play for the USA, I’m all for it. If/when we raise the World Cup trophy, I would hope they’re doing it for the pride of representing the USA first and foremost – not because it made good business sense.

      • I understand it’s within the rules. I just think this kind of thing is against the spirit of international football. And I also disagree that someone with a foreign parent is just as much a member of the parent’s country as someone born and raised there.

        Finally, did Di Stefano make a mockery of international football by playing for two different countries? Yes.

      • Di Stephano played for 3, but that was back then. Things were too loose then because you did not even have become a citizen to play for a team. You have had world cup winners play for different teams.

      • I respect your opinion, but I disagree re Di Stephano. The international soccer honored Di Stephano during the semi-final between Argentina and the Netherlands at the last WC. They did so with one minute of silence and the Argentine team also wore black ribbons in respect.

      • What, exactly, is the “spirit” of international football? Competition between nations, or is it between people? Or is it between “systems”?

        The problem I have with argumentum ab spiritus is that the spirit is vague and hard to define.

      • Up to a point Diego Costa is product of Spanish football. it was Atletico Madrid who took him as a nobody and nurtured him until he became the player he’s today.
        He ain’t Sergio Ramos but he ain’t Julian Green either.

      • Nope – FIFA makes a mockery of International football.

        And yes – I 100%, completely disagree with your position on this (but we both know that. I only commented to challenge this sanctity of International football angle you’re taking – all in good clean disagreement though and nothing but love for ya).

      • I agree – I hate what JK is doing to our NAT team and the only way to stop it is to can JK. I am having a hard time identifying with a team of Germans

    • Yeah, that was dirty. I knew the ban was coming his way but still he could have seriously injured our main guy there and that set me off on the day.


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