Italy 0-0 Portugal: Fernando Santos' side become first team to reach Nations League Finals
Report as Portugal seal top in Group A3 to reach Nations League Finals next June
By Michael Hincks
Last Updated: 17/11/18 11:38pm
Portugal became the first team to reach next summer's UEFA Nations League Finals after holding Italy to a goalless draw at the San Siro on Saturday.
Italy dominated proceedings as they chased the victory required to keep their hopes of winning Group A3 alive.
However, Wolves goalkeeper Rui Patricio was on hand to make two vital saves as Portugal qualified for June's showdown between the four group winners in League A.
Italy are guaranteed to finish second with the draw relegating Poland to the second tier of the competition.
Portugal set to host finals
UEFA had decided, in principle, that the winners of Group A3 would host the mini-tournament, meaning Portugal are expected to be confirmed as hosts at the UEFA Executive Committee meeting in Dublin on December 3.
A fine save from Patricio denied Lorenzo Insigne, with Ciro Immobile going on to blaze the follow-up over.
Patricio came to Portugal's rescue once more one keeping out Immobile's low effort after Marco Verratti's superb ball over the top.
Italy: Donnarumma (6), Florenzi (6), Chiellini (6), Bonucci (6), Biraghi (6), Verratti (7), Jorginho (6), Barella (6), Insigne (7), Chiesa (6), Immobile (6)
Subs: Lasagna (6), Pellegrini (6), Berardi (N/A)
Portugal: Patricio (7), Cancelo (6), Dias (6), Fonte (6), Rui (6), Carvalho (6), Neves (6), Pizzi (5), Bruma (6), Bernardo Silva (5), Andre Silva (5)
Subs: Mario (6), Guerreuro (N/A), Pereira (N/A)
Man of the match: Marco Verratti
Leonardo Bonucci then headed inches wide from a corner as Italy failed to capitalise on their first-half dominance.
Portugal continued to live dangerously after the break, with Federico Chiesa's strike deflecting narrowly wide following Cristiano Biraghi's cut back.
One Italy change from last month’s win against Poland saw Ciro Immobile come in for Federico Bernarderschi. Two Portugal changes saw Jose Fonte and Bruma replace Pepe and Rafa Silva.
After substitute Joao Mario fired over from 10 yards out, Portugal managed their first shot in the 76th minute, with Italy goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma getting down brilliantly to prevent William Carvalho's fierce low strike.
Man of the match - Marco Verratti
On what was ultimately a frustrating evening for Italy, Marco Verratti still managed to impress with a tireless box-to-box display.
The Paris Saint-Germain midfielder made a number of key passes to ignite Italy's attacks, but the hosts proved wasteful in front of goal, with 15 shots only resulting in three on target.
Portugal host Poland in the final Group A3 match on Tuesday, while Italy face USA in a friendly on the same evening. Both matches are live on the Sky Sports Football red button.