Believe it or not, we're only six weeks or so away from the 2019 Women's World Cup in France. Beside it being the biggest competition on the planet, it's also your first chance to see Italy compete in a World Cup since Brazil 2014. The less said about last summer the better, but it certainly didn't feel like a World Cup without Italy there, right?
Fortunately for us, the Azzurre wrapped up their qualification in no short order, booking their ticket for France by topping their qualification group. And now that we have a season of covering Serie A Femminile under our belts, we can watch this summer's tournament with a more educated eye as Italy attempt to make a name for themselves on the international stage; remember, this is their first World Cup appearance in 20 years.
To that end, the squad, under the guidance of head coach Milena Bertolini, has converged upon Coverciano, as the provisional roster of 26 began their first training sessions.
As one would expect, given the top heavy nature of the league, much of this provisional roster is composed of players from the top three sides: Juventus, Fiorentina and AC Milan. Headlined by Juve trio of Barbara Bonansea, Cristiana Girelli and Sara Gama, as well as Valentina Giacinti of Milan, the league's leading scorer, the top three sides made up an astounding 85% of the call-ups.
Scattered among that remaining 15% was Chievo's Stefania Tarenzi (who scored 13 goals this season and would be an ideal addition for Roma this summer, btw) and Roma's three ragazze. That’s it. That’s all. Those are the only non-Juve/Milan/Fiorentina members on this squad...unreal.
While the final rosters are a several weeks away, we can rest assured that Bartoli will make the squad, presumably starting at left back, while Pipitone seems like a safe bet to be one of the two or three keepers brought to France, leaving Serturini as the only wild card.
We’ll have more on this story as updates become available, but if you’re a Roma fan and love Italy’s national teams, then you’re in luck this summer!
The Provisional Roster
Goalkeepers: Francesca Durante (Fiorentina Women’s), Laura Giuliani (Juventus), Chiara Marchitelli (Florentia), Rosalia Pipitone (AS Roma)
Defenders: Elisa Bartoli (AS Roma), Lisa Boattin (Juventus), Laura Fusetti (Milan), Sara Gama (Juventus), Alia Guagni (Fiorentina Women’s), Linda Cimini Tucceri (Milan), Valery Vigilucci (Fiorentina Women’s)
Midfielders: Greta Adami (Fiorentina Women’s), Lisa Alborghetti (Milan), Valentina Bergamaschi (Milan), Barbara Bonansea (Juventus), Valentina Cernoia (Juventus), Aurora Galli (Juventus), Manuela Giugliano (Milan), Alice Parisi (Fiorentina Women’s), Martina Rosucci (Juventus), Annamaria Serturini (AS Roma)
Forwards: Cristiana Girelli (Juventus), Valentina Giacinti (Milan), Ilaria Mauro (Fiorentina Women’s), Daniela Sabatino (Milan), Stefania Tarenzi (Chievo Verona)