Italy set for Spain rematch at Nations League Finals, hosts Netherlands face Croatia


The Nations League Finals draw has thrown up a rematch between Italy and Spain, who also faced off in the competition’s final four in 2021.

European champions Italy will face Spain in the last four at the Nations League Finals in June, with hosts Netherlands drawn against World Cup semi-finalists Croatia.

Italy, who missed out on a second consecutive World Cup in Qatar last year, reached the semi-finals of the Nations League by beating Hungary to top a group that also included Germany and England.

Standing between Roberto Mancini’s men and the final is Spain, who beat the Azzurri 2-1 at the same stage of the competition in 2021 before losing the final to France.

Spain, who won Group A2 with Portugal, will be led by new head coach Luis de la Fuente after Luis Enrique left following their surprise World Cup exit against Morocco.

The Netherlands, who were beaten finalists at the opening 2019 Nations League final in Portugal, will face Croatia in the home semi-final at De Kuip in Rotterdam.

The Oranje are also under new management, with Ronald Koeman returning to the role in place of Louis van Gaal following their World Cup quarter-final loss to eventual winners Argentina.

While it’s all change for Spain and the Netherlands, there will be a familiar sight in Croatia’s side in June, with talismanic midfielder Luka Modric committed to continuing his international career after helping the team win bronze in Qatar.

The semi-finals will take place on 14 and 15 June, with the play-offs and the third-place final taking place on 18 June.