Milan, November 14: For the first time since 1958, the four-time champions Italy has failed to qualify for the FIFA World Cup. After losing in the World Cup Qualifying European play-off against Sweden, 0-1 the Italian team failed to avoid the elimination. Sweden holds on to defeat Italy and return to World Cup in Russia 2018 play-off.
On 10th November, Sweden had defeated Italy in the first leg of the tie by 1-0 and in the second leg, the match ended without any goal scored on Monday night. For only the second time in the history of Italy, they will not be present in the competition. In 1930 they had refused to play in the inaugural tournament.
The FIFA World cup will be held in Russia in June 2018. This tournament will witness the absence of the big football nations like Italy along with Netherlands, US, Chile, Ghana, Ivory Coast and Cameroon. With the win, Sweden returns to global finals for the first time since Germany 2006. Italy missed out on World Cup for the first time in 60 years.
Italy Captain Gianluigi Buffon retires as Italy lost to Sweden in World Cup play-off. He said that it is a shame my last official game coincided with the failure to qualify for the World Cup. Blame is shared equally among everyone. There can't be scapegoats.