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The match remained level as the 30-minute mark passed, but it was Italy that continued to look the most likely, with Bernardeschi twice coming close with attempts from distance. A fairly uneventful first period brought just one attempt on target, however, as the two teams entered the break on level terms.
Italy came closest to making the breakthrough in the early stages of the second half through Gaetano Monachello and Bernardschi, but neither could hit the target from outside the box.
The hosts were ahead in the 66th minute, however, when Parigini converted after excellent work from Bernardeschi. Italy's joy was somewhat short-lived though as Bernardeschi picked up his second yellow four minutes later to leave the home side with 10 men.
Republic of Ireland had a wonderful chance to level in the 75th minute through Sean Kavanagh, but the attacker could not convert from inside the box. Dylan Connolly also came close late on as the visitors continued to press, but the home team managed to hold on displace their opponents at the top of the group.