Giampiero Ventura hailed Italy’s versatility after claiming to have had the better of Tuesday’s 0-0 friendly draw with Germany at San Siro.
Italy enjoyed the lion’s share of the few chances there were in Milan, Andrea Belotti hitting the post with the hosts’ clearest sight of Bernd Leno’s goal.
A highly experimental German side offered little in attack after the break and Ventura was delighted with his team, having deployed them in a third differing system of his short tenure.
“This is the result, we have to accept it. Both sides were missing a few players, but they are the world champions and we allowed them practically nothing,” Ventura told Rai Sport.
“Aside from hitting the post, we had four or five chances on the counter that could’ve been done better.
“I appreciated the approach, determination, the reading of certain situations. We played in Israel with 3-5-2, in Liechtenstein with 4-2-4 and here with 3-4-3, all with two days of training to prepare.
“I have to admire this team and anyone who can read between the lines will realise the future is far rosier than people think.”
Ventura took the Italy job from Antonio Conte following a dispiriting penalty shoot-out defeat to Germany at Euro 2016 and reflected favourably on his first four months in the role.
“From the first friendly with France I wouldn’t even wipe out the first half against Spain,” he added of a 3-1 defeat and 1-1 draw.
“I’d wipe out the 15 minutes against Macedonia [a pulsating, last-gasp 3-2 win] when we lost our identity and ran a huge risk.
“The first half against Spain was bad, but it taught me and the players a great deal. I think our start has been extremely positive.
“Spain [in World Cup qualifying on September 2, 2017] is a long way off and we have to focus on the next, far more important, game against Albania.”