ZURICH (AP) — Russia beat Italy 3-0 on Friday in the last warmup game before the European Championship to send the Azzurri to its first three-game losing streak in more than a quarter-century and cap a dismal week for Italian soccer.
Italy was done in by uncharacteristically poor defending in the second half, as Alexander Kerzhakov broke the deadlock after he was left unmarked in the 60th minute. Another defensive mistake allowed Roman Shirokov to score into an empty net in the 76th following a mix-up between substitute goalkeeper Morgan De Sanctis and Christian Maggio.
Maggio was again at fault for Russia’s third, which Shirokov headed home in the 89th.
The four-time world champions have lost three straight games for first time since 1983 and have not scored in 300 minutes.
Italy was looking for a morale-boosting victory, with the country embroiled in another match-fixing scandal which saw 14 people arrested on Monday and forced Prandelli to drop Domenico Criscito from his roster after the defender was placed under investigation.