Baggio: ‘It’s madness Italy weren’t given World Cup place as Euro champions’

epa04379951 Former soccer players (L-R) Argentinian Javier Zanetti, Italians Roberto Baggio and Alessandro Del Piero pose for photographers before the Interreligious 'Match for Peace' at the Olimpico Stadium in Rome, Italy, 01 September 2014. The match has been organised by Pope Francis upon the pope's appeals for an end to conflicts around the world. EPA/CLAUDIO PERI

Roberto Baggio calls it ‘madness’ that Italy don’t get automatic World Cup qualification as reigning champions of Europe and the failure to reach Qatar created ‘psychological’ after-effects.

The Divine Ponytail was speaking at an event at Rome’s Fiumicino Airport this evening when he was asked about the fact Italy won’t be at the tournament in November and December.

“Italy won the European Championship, I think it’s shameful, it’s madness that they are not given an automatic berth to the World Cup for that,” said Baggio.

They finished runners-up to Switzerland in their World Cup qualifying group, then lost the play-off against North Macedonia to a last-gasp goal after dominating the match.

“Anyone can lose one game against anyone else on a bad day, but these lads deserve some sort of reward for what they achieved, don’t they? If I had been in that squad, I would’ve struggled to accept it.”

Italy have certainly gone off the boil since last summer, looking fatigued and to a degree sated in the Nations League Final Four and the World Cup qualifiers.

That culminated in last night’s 3-0 defeat to Copa America winners Argentina in the Finalissima at Wembley Stadium.

“I think Italy suffered psychological after-effects from the World Cup elimination. You can see it’s a psychological issue,” argued Baggio.

“We saw last night, you just cannot compare the calm and confidence of the Argentina players to our current state of mind.

“Roberto Mancini did something extraordinary, he must be respected and allowed to continue working the way he has done. We have young talents who are not given room to play in Serie A and that is a well-known problem.”

There are still very, very faint chances Italy could be given a berth to the 2022 World Cup if Ecuador are excluded for falsifying the paperwork of one of their players during the qualifiers.

In theory, Italy would be next in line as the highest team in the FIFA World Ranking not to have qualified, but it’s more likely a different South American side would be promoted instead.

Among the new generation of Azzurri there’s Nicolò Zaniolo, although the Roma starlet has been held back by repeated injury problems.

“I hope he can recover fully, as unfortunately the injuries have really penalised him a great deal. The goal he scored in the Conference League Final can only boost his confidence and let him look to the future with less pressure.”

27 Comments on “Baggio: ‘It’s madness Italy weren’t given World Cup place as Euro champions’”

  1. They call it World Cup not European world Cup , it belongs to the world which means no continent is superior to the other! You get in by merit not as a gift for winning your continental competition! If Italy had been given an automatic spot for winning Euros which doesn’t concern the African continent or Asia or south America, then The African champions, south America champions and every other champion from other continent gets automatic spot! You people have to erase the idea that makes you feel whatever you people do in the European continent is somehow superior to the others around the world.. It’s just pathetic coming from a great Legend..

  2. Hey Stan, you need to read between the lines, Baggio is saying any winner in their continent should automatically qualify. At the very least Europe and South America should get the automatic spot. This tourny is so watered down now. Its much harder to win a euro then a WC and if anyone thinks different you need a lesson in football. I can help you with that

  3. France Croatia
    Germany Argentina
    Spain Holland
    Italy France
    Brazil Germany
    France Brazil
    Brazil Italy
    Germany Argentina

    Off the top of my now 40-year old head going back to 1990 when I was 8. Hope I am right.

    That is where the European superiority comes from in this sport.

  4. European and S. America are the only 2 continents to produce Wotld Cup champions. Fact.

    Europe contributes the lion’s share of revenue to FiFA via % of membership dues, advertising revenue, and corporate sponsorship. Fact.

    The postmodern, globalist narrative dies nothing but to obfuscate economic realities.

    The World Cup is watered down because Infantino needs to broaden (bribe) electoral support from the other continental delegations. His globalist c.s agenda is only possible because of UEFA revenue. Fact.

  5. Euro Cup > World Cup. UEFA qualifying is a joke with this stupid playoff money grab. It needs to go back to top 2 in group qualify and yes every continental champion should automatically qualify the fact that they don’t is like The GOAT Baggio said “una vergogna”

  6. Stan, that’s what Baggio meant. Italians they don’t have that arrogance, maybe you are confused between the Italian and the British, French, and German descendants.
    Read between the lines my friend.

  7. This is all ridiculous. The South American qualification means Brazil and Argentina virtually have automatic qualification. Everybody knows this but nothing is done about it. It is much harder to get through the European qualification. Put Italy, France, Germany in the South American league with only Bolivia, Venezuela etc to beat and we’d qualify everytime! And if some cretin out there still thinks I’m wrong, let me just add that Uruguay qualified losing 6, yes 6, games. It’s a farce. And to make it worse Argentina won the South American title in a slimmed down tournament while Italy won the Euros beating Spain, Belgium (no 1 in the world) and England at home. C’mon, let’s just say we were the victims of our own success and were just mentally exhausted (and even then one successful Jorgie pen would’ve still got us over the line).

  8. Why not take the top 32 ranked teams in the world regardless of where they are located? Why have these useless rankings? One year Liverpool won the Champion’s league but were not in the top 4 in England so they changed the rules so that they would be in Champions league the following year. It is a joke that the 6th ranked Euro champ is not in the world cup. Baggio can say whatever he likes. He is a true legend.

  9. Baggio as always is completely correct. Every continent should have automatic qualification for their champions, because its ridiculous that “the best team in Europe” will be missing out due to their qualifying competition parking the bus, missing 2 penalties and eventually going out in a one off game (which never should have been played in Palermo FFS!! – God Italian organisers are so stupid).

    Knowing Fifa, something will have to change because they have to know that not having Italy will be losing them some revenue, and that’s what football is completely all about now isn’t it?

  10. “Italy won the European Championship, I think it’s shameful, it’s madness that they are not given an automatic berth to the World Cup for that,” said Baggio.

    Earn your place in the world cup, just like everyone else has to, if Ecuador lose their place it should go to another south American side, its called the world cup not the ego cup, you had your chances to go through and messed them up.

  11. It’s amazing when 🤡 say Italy doesn’t deserve to be there yet teams like Iran, S. Arabia any team from Asia or Africa and South America aside from Brazil and Argentina (Italian Migrants) deserve it but not them. The system needs to be revamped and should be done more so on an overall tier rankings not this luck of the draw bs qualifying group and then playoff. Anyone can have an off day in 1 game. NM sat and watched Italy shoot one after another and then scored the goal of their lives in 92nd min. 1 shot on target and it goes in. FIFA is a shame need to hit them in the pocket book to enact any real change. We need to speak up as Italians especially players like Baggio so they know how we feel. Always let them know our displeasure cause if the fans aren’t happy it hurts their money.

  12. What bothers me is that after winning the Euros in July Italy had to play qualifying games in September. They tied Bulgaria and Switzerland. They never recovered from these games. The pandemic forced them to endure this schedule and then they had to play the nation cup playoffs. This is really the unfair part of this and maybe Baggio is right indirectly because if the tournament had been held as scheduled in 2020 rather than 2021 a fresh azzurri team would have won those games.

  13. Baggio should know better.

    This is ridiculous. What’s with this presumptiousness and arrogance?

    It’s another tournament. 2 Years is an eternity in football.

  14. I am fine with this, if all the other confederations get automatic bids, too. Like the Copa America winner, the ACN, Gold Cup, etc.

    I don’t like the way WCQ is done as it is, but there is so much money in it. I don’t know what could realistically be done differently.

  15. It’s also called World Cup so Europe should not take 13 slots. It’s leeway unfair in that regard. Each region should have equal slots!

  16. @Chak…

    Why should Europe not have 13 slots for World Cup participation?

    Europe contributes the most finfing as a % of FifA confederation dues, corporate sponsorship, and advertising revenue.

    If it were not for Europe FifA and the world Cup would not have the financial resources to stage the tournament.

    You globalists really do not understand nor wish to acknowledge which continent contributes the lion’s share of resources for which the remaining continents can compete and benefit.

    Get a clue!

  17. Ok it was denial, that Italy surely couldn’t miss our on the WC again. After that people were angry at Mancini and rightly so for being stubborn. Then currently everyone is bargaining with some trying to use every advantage there is to maybe get back in the WC. Depression is what will follow when the World Cup actually starts then acceptance when the winner is announced. All this talk about the Euro winner should get special treatment in other competition is just nonsense the sooner Italy accepts that its not going to happen the better. Mancini should start playing young promising players or he should just resign. Again the sooner it’s accepted that there’s no wold cup the better.

  18. Hey Stan, I catch the odd North American game (MLS) and concacaf.. it’s definitely inferior.. yes, Europe plays the best football..

  19. Everyone knew the rules before qualification began. You can’t be upset after the qualification didn’t go as you wished. Of course the best teams are in Europe and of course the European Championship is the most difficult tournament to win. But Italy were handed qualification ‘on a plate’. They just had to beat Bulgaria, Northern Ireland and Switzerland at home. They had a series of ‘bad games’ and that’s no one’s fault other than their own. The WC has to be reasonably equitable (even though it’s not really) and that means having less talented teams represented as well as the top European teams. It’s devastating that Italy did not qualify. But it’s not the fault of any one else – and especially not of these ‘globalists’ that the conspiracy theorists tout.

  20. Imagine arguing that someone who could not qualify, should be given a ticket for free.

    Stop whining.

  21. yep no ones fault only coach and players earned been at fault every team in the europe draw all play under the same rules there is a lot of misguided people on here start blaming coaches and players they had theyre destiny in they’re own hands

  22. if only we had a Baggio now when it counted. Italy had 4 games to get a single win (3 points) which would of sealed their spot at Qatar…they failed. then had a chance through playoff against a nation 90% of the world didnt even know exsisted, and lost.
    had this situation come up in Baggio’s time ya know damn well he would of scored a brace in at least one of 4 matches.

  23. Baggio likes to pull our leg, doesn’t he? He should know better than to talk nonsense.

    Italy do not deserve to go to Qatar, as much as we wish the opposite.

    From Baggio to “Gnonto” how we have fallen.

    Roby can you please clone yourself and teach these strikers how to score?

  24. ” cheech on Jun 3, 2022 19:05 at 7:05 pm ”

    You can blame the Brazilian reject Gioringo whatever his name is for missing penalties.

    But Mancini persists with him!!!!

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