MX23RW : Sunday, September 23 22:25:53
Oct 13, 2014 at 7.45pm UK
Malta
0-1
Italy

Briffa (41')
Mifsud (27')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Pelle (23')
Darmian (43')
Bonucci (73')

Preview: Malta vs. Italy

Sports Mole previews Monday's Euro 2016 qualifier between Malta and Italy in Valletta as Antonio's Conte side look to continue their 100% Group H record.

Italy will attempt to make it nine points from three Group H fixtures when they travel to Malta for their Euro 2016 qualifier on Monday evening.

Antonio Conte's side have beaten Norway and Azerbaijan to sit atop the table after two matches and will expect to have made it three consecutive wins by the time that they face Croatia next month.

In total, Malta and Italy have met on six separate occasions, with Italy winning all of those matches. Malta also enter the game having not won a single match since last November, when they beat the Faroe Islands 3-2 in a friendly on their own patch.

In Group H, Malta opened with a 2-0 defeat in Croatia, before suffering a 3-0 loss at home to Norway on Friday evening. They are currently ranked 155th in the FIFA rankings, while they have never made it to any major international tournament.

Malta have leading scorer Michael Mifsud fit and available despite a slight concern over the striker's fitness and the 33-year-old, who has scored 39 times in 107 caps, is expected to start in attack alongside Andre Schembri, who has 58 caps to his name.

Ryan Fenech and Paul Fenech should also both start for the home side.

Italy boss Conte has no fresh injury concerns from Friday's match, but the former Juventus manager could make changes for this fixture, with Marco Verratti and Graziano Pelle both hoping to come into the XI.

Ciro Immobile should continue in attack, while Andrea Pirlo is once more expected to operate at the base of the midfield in Conte's preferred 3-5-2 formation.

Recent form

Malta: LLLLL

Italy: LLWWW

Possible starting lineups

Malta: Hogg; Agius, Camilleri, Failla, P Fenech; Briffa, R Fenech, Z Muscat; Mifsud, Schembri, R Muscat

Italy: Buffon; Bonucci, Chiellini, Ranocchia; De Sciglio, Marchisio, Pirlo, Verratti, Darmian; Immobile, Pele

Sports Mole says: 0-3

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Giorgio Chiellini of Italy #3 celebrates after scoring the opening goal during the EURO 2016 Group H Qualifier match between Italy and Azerbaijan at Stadio Renzo Barbera on October 10, 2014
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