While Luciano Spalletti seems to have a favourite option for Italy’s centre-forward role, Atalanta boss Gian Piero Gasperini warns that Gianluca Scamacca should not yet be considered ‘a great champion.’

Scamacca joined Atalanta from West Ham last summer and has scored seven goals in 25 appearances across all competitions this season. Italy coach Spalletti called him up for games against Malta, England, North Macedonia and Ukraine. Scamacca only started once under the Azzurri’s new boss but scored his first international goal at Wembley Stadium against England this past October.

The former West Ham striker, now at Atalanta, may start against Inter in Serie A on Wednesday, but Gasperini has warned that Scamacca should not yet be regarded as a top player. “He is a boy who behaves very well, works a lot, is positive, the only problem is considering him a great champion, he works to try to become one as many do, he has had excellent games and excellent matches,” said La Dea’s boss at a pre-match press conference.

Scamacca remained out of action for nearly a month in December due to an adductor injury, and Charles De Ketelaere played his cards right, becoming a regular starter at the Gewiss Stadium, scoring six goals between December and January.

Scamacca remains one of the candidates for the starting centre-forward role at Euro 2024 even if Spalletti seems to have already picked his favourite option up front.

Napoli striker Giacomo Raspadori, not a regular in the Partenopei’s XI, started four games from six with Spalletti in charge, scoring one goal and providing an assist in a 5-2 win over North Macedonia.

It remains to be seen if the Certaldo-born coach will continue relying mainly on the ex-Sassuolo talent or if other candidates will climb the pecking order. Surely, the Azzurri boss doesn’t have so many options at his disposal.

The highest Italian top scorers in Serie A are Domenico Berardi, Riccardo Orsolini and Andrea Pinamonti with nine goals each. Among them, only Pinamonti is a centre-forward, but the 24-year-old has made one appearance with the Azzurri under Roberto Mancini.

One thought on “Gasperini sends Scamacca warning to Italy, but Spalletti has already found a regular starter”
  1. Attacking midfielders will have to make up the difference: Frattessi, Pellegrini, and Barella. These players are able to go for goals and have proven so.

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