Italy boss Ventura refuses to rule out resignation

Giampiero Ventura Italy Israel
The side might only be a point away from securing a World Cup qualifying spot, but the Italy manager has been put on the spot over his future

Italy head coach Giampiero Ventura has refused to rule out resigning if his side lose to Macedonia at the Stadio Olimpico Grande Torino on Friday. 

The Azzurri need just a point from their final two Group G games to claim second place, with Spain’s iron grip on top spot unlikely to be loosened. 

Italy travel to Albania on Monday for their final group game, but Ventura remained tight-lipped about whether he would be in charge if his side were to suffer a shock defeat to the Macedonians.
At his pre-match press conference, he said: "Will I resign if we lose to Macedonia? We’re already playing for the playoffs. Maybe. No-one knows, but that’s how it is."

Ventura has demanded "desire and enthusiasm" from his side ahead of the double header to put them in the healthiest position possible for the play-offs, which take place in November. 

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"Team and formation? Beyond those things, I'm interested in desire and enthusiasm," he added. 

"The players have always made themselves available and got involved. We've already picked up 18 points, but we have to do more and pick up at least two more to have a good position in the playoffs.

"This week was one of the best in terms of preparation. This is a very good group from a technical point of view, but also in terms of character."