Graziano Pelle hopes his goal against France marks a fresh start for his Italy career after failing from the spot in their Euro 2016 penalty shootout.
In the quarter-final against Germany, Pelle appeared to suggest to opposition goalkeeper Manuel Neuer that he was going to chip his effort down the middle, before sending his kick tamely wide of the left-hand post.
Italy eventually lost 6-5 in Antonio Conte’s final game before departing to take over at Chelsea.
Conte’s successor Giampiero Ventura took charge of the side for the first time on Thursday, with Pelle scoring in a 3-1 friendly defeat to France, and the Shandong Luneng striker hopes his goal sets him on the road to redemption with Azzurri fans.
“I left Italy fans crying and I really want to make it up to them,” said Pelle, in quotes reported by La Gazzetta dello Sport.
“I’ll start again from this goal, because I want to stay with the national team for a long time.”