UEFA Euro 2020

Federico Chiesa has established himself as a superstar with blistering Euro 2020

Max Parsons
Federico Chiesa celebrating Euro 2020 glory
Federico Chiesa celebrating Euro 2020 glory / Claudio Villa/Getty Images
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It feels like we set off on a month-long festival through European football just days ago but, somehow, Euro 2020 has reached its conclusion already.

Italy blew the tournament away - they now stand at 34 unbeaten - and acting more like assertive lions rather than the 'dark horses' they were supposed to be. The Azzurri eventually tasted glory as they beat England 3-2 on penalties in the Euro 2020 final at Wembley, securing their first European Championship crown for 53 years.

Giorgio Chiellini
Italy lift the trophy / Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

It was a tournament victory based on collective spirit, efficient and creative play, and disciplined defensive work. But there were also several stunning displays among Roberto Mancini's squad over the course of the tournament - and one that truly stood out was Federico Chiesa.

Coming into Euro 2020, many may have guessed at Ciro Immobile or Lorenzo Insigne to be the main hit men in attack but, when it really mattered, Chiesa has been the one to pop up and inspire his team's progression.

With a totally dominant group stage, the Juventus man's effect may have been unnoticed somewhat but, as games got tighter deeper into the tournament, he stepped up.

Boy, did he step up.

Federico Chiesa, Eric Garcia
Federico Chiesa bends one onto the far corner against Spain / Matt Dunham - Pool/Getty Images

As Italy's round of 16 fixture against Austria went into extra time, it was Chiesa that popped up with a magical goal to put Mancini's side 1-0 up - a goal that would spur the Italians on to go through courtesy of a 2-1 score line.

The winger also put his side ahead in the semi-final against Spain, curling in a stunning strike past a despairing Unai Simon and wheeling off to celebrate in typically passionate Italian style. And, in Sunday's final, he was desperately unlucky not to score a beautiful goal from outside the area, narrowly dragging his effort wide of a helpless Jordan Pickford's post.

But it's not just his two strikes and constant goal threat in the tournament that have made him shine.

Chiesa is an absolute work horse; time and time again he has been one of the most tenacious players on the field, tracking back and applying himself combatively in defensive duties. His blistering pace and neat feet has made his tireless and direct running at opposition a nightmare to deal with, and he's looked the most likely among Italian attackers to create and make things happen in dangerous areas - a menace to play against and integral to a regenerated Italy that have once again reached the top.

Federico Chiesa
Federico Chiesa with the trophy / Claudio Villa/Getty Images

He's very rarely been less than an 8/10 when it has truly mattered and he's been a shining light for a glorious and tournament-winning Italian side.

He may have impressed during the 2020/21 season with 16 Serie A goal contributions - and will undoubtedly continue his staggering form at the Old Lady next term - but, it has been with a blistering and inspiring performance at Euro 2020 this summer that Chiesa has established himself as a true superstar.

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