Lithuania 0-2 Italy Kaunas, 06/06/07
Quagliarella (31, 45)

Sampdoria striker Fabio Quagliarella scored two wonder goals on his full international debut to help Italy defeat Lithuania and retain the UFWC title. The 23-year-old had only made two substitute appearances prior to this start but, with Luca Toni injured and other Italian strikers misfiring, coach Roberto Donadoni gambled on playing him behind the vetran Filippo Inzaghi – and the gamble paid off.

Quagliarella struck first in the 31st minute, cutting in from the right wing and driving a superb 20-yard left-foot shot into the far corner of the net. His second strike came moments before half-time, this time a controlled right-foot shot from a similar distance that found the same far corner of the goal.

But if Quagliarella’s performance was eye-catching, the Italian side as a whole never looked like world champions. Despite dominating their opposition, they once again squandered several goalscoring opportunities. Lithuania had few chances, the best of which – a fierce shot from Marius Stankevicius – was held by Gianluigi Buffon.

Italy will need to improve for their next match – a UFWC/Euro double-header against France on 8 September.

About Paul Brown

Paul is a freelance journalist and author. He created the UFWC in 2003, and subsequently wrote the Unofficial Football World Champions book. He can be found on Twitter @paulbrownUK.