Lorenzo Colombo got the only goal as Italy beat Montenegro in their Under-21 European Championship qualifier, which puts the Azzurrini second in their group.

Colombo had a couple of first half chances, one charged down and the other well saved from point-blank range, so it was only fitting that he broke the deadlock.

The Milan-owned striker controlled a low cross from the right by Raoul Bellanova, managed to turn and shoot with the same movement from 12 yards into the far bottom corner.

Marco Carnesecchi did have to make a tricky save at full stretch on Nikola Krstovic’s snapshot, while Lorenzo Lucca’s curler was not far off target and a Riccardo Calafiori strike deflected.

Carnesecchi rescued the result with another smart save in stoppages on the long-range sudden Krstovic scorcher.

It’s good news all round for Italy, who have a 100 per cent record after two games, as Sweden were held and are now on seven points from three fixtures, while the Republic of Ireland have four points in two matches.

Italy 1-0 Montenegro

Colombo 53 (I)

Italy U21: Carnesecchi; Bellanova, Okoli, Lovato, Udogie (Calafiori 72); Ricci, Tonali, Rovella (Brescianini 93); Yeboah (Mulattieri 68), Colombo (Lucca 68), Cancellieri (Ferrarini 93)

Montenegro U21: Ivezic; Pesukic, Milic, Obradovic, Raznatovic; Janjic (Matanovic 72), Brnovic (Divanovic 46); Vukcevic (Bojovic 46), Vukotic (Mijovic 72), Sijaric (Strikovic 83); Krstovic

Ref: Eskas (NOR)

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