Sweden end Italy’s 60- year World Cup streak
PLAYERS from both teams slumped to the ground, the Swedes in exhausted ecstasy, the Italians in losers’ agony.
On a starry night in Milan, four- time champions Italy failed to qualify for the World Cup for the first time in six decades.
Sweden advanced for the first time since 2006.
Despite three quarters of possession, Italy were stymied by a goalless draw in the second leg of their playoff and Sweden prevailed 1- 0 on aggregate.
“It’s a black moment for our game,” Italy midfielder Daniele De Rossi said.
Italy had failed to qualify for the World Cup just once before, reaching 14 straight since falling short in 1958.
The last major competitions Italy failed to qualify for were the 1984 and 1992 European Championships.
It could have been worse for Italy as Sweden were denied what looked like two clear- cut penalties for handballs.