Marco Verratti completely ran the game in Italy’s 1-0 win over Wales at the Stadio Olimpico on Saturday night.
The Paris Saint-Germain star didn’t feature in the Azzurri’s first two fixtures as he was recovering from a knee injury.
This was actually his European Championship debut but you wouldn’t have known it by the way he played.
Verratti was typically classy; breaking up play, orchestrating attacks showing what a world-class midfielder he is as he controlled and dictated with ease.
The 28-year-old had 136 touches in the game, which was more than anyone else on the pitch. He completed 100% of both his tackles and take-ons, as well as boasting a 94% pass accuracy (103 completed passes).
Marco Verratti’s game by numbers for #ITA vs. #WAL:
136 touches (most)
100% take-ons completed
94% passing accuracy
5 chances created (most)
4 tackles (most)
3 crosses completed (most)
2 aerials won
2 fouls won
1 assist (most)
He did EVERYTHING. 🤯 pic.twitter.com/fIGRREnu99
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) June 20, 2021
His tally of five chances created bettered the efforts of anyone else involved and most crucially, he supplied the assist that resulted in Italy taking maximum points in Group A.
Marco Verratti vs Wales pic.twitter.com/w2koBOK51K
— PSG Comps (@CompsPSG) June 20, 2021
Verratti sent in a lovely cross from a free-kick which was volleyed home by Matteo Pessina on just his second start for Italy.
The former Pescara man’s display in the middle of the park was as complete as they come and served as a reminder that he is one of the very best in the world in his position.
His outing led to widespread appreciation amongst fans:
Funny when people keep saying the Italians have no world class players. Marco Verratti walks into any team in this tournament. Unbelievable talent! #ITA #EURO2020
— Joe Di Carlo (@joedicarlo7) June 20, 2021
The ability of Marco Verratti to return directly to the top level after weeks of injury, that will always amaze me. As soon as he is back onto the pitch, he rolls out his best football.
— ɴᴇᴇʟᴏꜰᴀʀ ᴀʙᴜ ᴇᴜꜱᴜꜰ (@neelof4r) June 20, 2021
No central midfielder passes through defensive lines as well as Marco Verratti. Even when the Man City press was at it’s most intense in the Champions League semi-final, he was the only PSG player to be able to play through it unphased. A phenomenal midfielder.
— Premier League Panel (@PremLeaguePanel) June 20, 2021
Marco Verratti is easily one of the top 5 midfielders in the world.
— Prajwol Khadka (@PrajwoI) June 20, 2021
Marco Verratti is simply world class. A true metronome on the ball. The game moves at his pace, he can up the tempo or he slow it down when he wants. His vision and execution is sublime. What a player. #ITA #EURO2020
— Anthony ⚽️🎙 (@antzhumbleent) June 20, 2021
What a sparkling performance from Marco Verratti. ⭐ pic.twitter.com/4RFMedRArX
— SportingMatrix (@Sporting_Matrix) June 20, 2021
Marco Verratti is probably one of the most complete midfielders in Europe.
— The United Link 🏆 (@TheUnitedLink) June 20, 2021
We’re talking about an absurdly gifted footballer who would get into every single team competing in Euro 2020.
If he keeps producing, Verratti could quite easily go down as an all-time great.