Defiant Italy boss Roberto Mancini said he will lead the Azzurri to World Cup glory.
Despite winning Euro 2020 exactly 12 months ago, Italy missed out on qualification for the 2022 World Cup which takes place towards the end of this year following a shock loss to North Macedonia in the play-off.
Following that match, Mancini took time to decide his future before opting to remain coach – and now appears to suggest he is in it for the long-term.
He told La Gazzetta dello Sport: “From when I became manager, I had an objective: win a Euros and a World Cup. A year ago, with the cup in my hands, I told myself: ‘I’m going to win after the other.’
“I was thinking about this World Cup – obviously that isn’t the case. But I continue to think we will win one, yes.”
Mancini also said that, as well as in the immediate aftermath of the defeat to North Macedonia, he also considered stepping down after their Wembley triumph at Euro 2020.
He added: “More the second time: I found myself in a really difficult situation. I thought about it a bit after Wembley but there was a World Cup a little more than a year later.”
Italy’s Euros win came as somewhat of a surprise as the failed to qualify for the World Cup two years earlier and Mancini said, following their success, players were queueing up to take a selfie with the trophy “as if it would run away.”
Asked whether he felt this emphasised the fact it was a surprise win, he said: “We certainly achieved a miracle but not just at that Euros: in three-and-a-half years playing at a top level.
“It happens that you win a tournament because everything goes for you in that month: that wasn’t the case with us.
“There was a precise journey behind us leading up to this: many important matches, not just seven.”