Italy Fail To Reach World Cup – A National Failure?

Image by On Monday night, Italy failed to reach the World Cup for the first time since 1958 after defeat to Sweden over two legs (1-0 on aggregate). The full-time whistle was met by groans, tears, uproar and the sight of young Italian hopefuls knowing they’d missed a chance at a World Cup, ending Gianluigi Buffon’s international career with it. The night was labelled a tragic one for Italian football and Italy as a nation, as politics and football have overlapped so often over the course of this great nations history. A national failure though? I’m not so sure. Italy’s failure to qualify highlights a great flaw found in tournament football, as well as European football itself. Through TV rights, sponsorship