The Azzurri face missing out on World Cup qualification for the first time in 60 years – a situation they must now remedy in Monday's return leg at San Siro.
Ventura reverted to the 3-5-2 formation employed by predecessor Antonio Conte for the match at Friends Arena but they lacked creativity in the face of a robust Sweden side, who claimed victory through substitute Jakob Johansson's deflected strike in the 61st minute.
Matteo Darmian almost equalised when his rasping drive cannoned back off the post, leaving Ventura feeling hard done by, and he reserved some of his frustration for the match officials.
"[Gianluigi] Buffon did not make a save, we created opportunities and hit the post," Ventura told Sky Sport Italia.
| #Ventura : "Considering what happened on the pitch, the result was harsh. I hope that in Milan we get given what they were given tonight. In such an important match, a different approach was needed."— Italy (@azzurri) November 10, 2017
"It's an incorrect result. It needed more attention from the referee. Now I hope that at San Siro they allow us what the referee allowed them tonight.
"A draw was the minimum we could've expected considering the two performances. I repeat, at this level, the referee needed to be more attentive.
"There were chances from [Andrea] Belotti and Darmian. After the first 90 minutes they are ahead, now I hope that San Siro will give us a hand."