Jorginho is set to appear at his first major tournament for Italy after helping the Azzurri qualify for next summer’s European Championships, and the midfielder says that achievement feels extra special because of his country’s failure to reach the last World Cup.
Jorginho played two years ago when Italy could only draw the second leg of their play-off with Sweden in Milan, going down 1-0 on aggregate and missing out on a World Cup finals for the first time in 60 years.
They have made no mistake this time around, though, winning all seven of their Euro 2020 qualifying matches to date, including against Greece on Saturday when Jorginho’s penalty set them on their way to a 2-0 success in Rome.
‘It’s a fantastic result, especially considering all the horrible times we went through two years ago,’ our midfielder said.
‘We deserved this achievement and are truly happy, because we wanted it so much and we fought for it.
‘We’re proving ourselves to be a good group of players, we’re all on the same page, and it’s fun to work in those circumstances.
‘The Olimpico crowd was excellent and I am sure it’ll be even more passionate next June. We’ll do everything to entertain the supporters, as it’s wonderful to play in that atmosphere.’
Rome is one of 12 host venues for the continent-wide tournament, with Italy set to play at least two of their group matches on home soil.
For Jorginho it will be a chance to show what he can do for his country in a showpiece tournament. That may include taking more penalties, with his two successful spot-kicks in this qualification campaign meaning he has now converted 15 of the 16 he has taken for club and country.
‘Are you trying to bring me bad luck?!' he laughed when told of his sensational record from 12 yards. ‘I trained hard on penalties, but I’m happier with the result for the team, as it’s great that we won and deserved the victory.’
Italy are next in action away to Liechtenstein tomorrow.