Pelle strike gives 1-0 victory
Italy gave themselves a European Championship boost with a comfortable 1-0 win over Scotland in a warm-up friendly at Malta's Ta' Qali national stadium on Sunday.Striker Graziano Pelle broke the deadlock 12 minutes into the second half with a fine curling finish inside David Marshall's left-hand post after a fine through ball into the box from Daniele De Rossi.
Scotland, who failed to qualify for next month's Euros, hardly troubled an all-Juventus back three and did not win a corner until the 70th minute, although eight minutes later Matt Ritchie hit the diving Gianluigi Buffon's side netting after a mistake in Italy's defence by substitute Federico Bernardeschi.
Euro 2016 begins on June 10 with Antonio Conte's Italy team opening their Group E campaign against Belgium in Lyon on June 13 before they face Sweden and Ireland.
Midfielder Emanuele Giaccherini missed Italy's three chances in the first half, Marshall making a double save with the first.
Antonio Candreva's seventh-minute free kick beat the Scotland wall but Marshall went down sharply to block the shot. Giaccherini followed up but the keeper parried his effort too.
The midfielder was guilty of poor finishing in the 23rd when he blasted Candreva's cross way over the bar.
Giaccherini was then just wide of the far post five minutes later with an effort from De Rossi's lob over the defence.
Conte will have been pleased with the fitness of De Rossi, who played until the 67th after returning from an Achilles injury, given the midfielder's sharp eye for a through ball.