Danilo admits he didn’t expect Italy to miss out on the 2022 World Cup, while he explains what changed at Juventus when Cristiano Ronaldo left.
The Brazil international spoke to his nation’s ESPN after the Azzurri failed to qualify for the tournament in Qatar, which will be played in November and December.
“I don’t see a clear favourite to win the World Cup. Argentina won the Copa America, then there’s France, Spain play well, while England are solid. These are all different cultures and different approaches to football,” said the veteran.
“It was certainly a surprise that Italy didn’t qualify and I didn’t think that could happen. I have many teammates in the squad and was cheering them on.
“This just shows that modern football is unpredictable. North Macedonia deserve respect because they had a plan and stuck with it.”
North Macedonia eventually lost 2-0 to Portugal with a Bruno Fernandes brace, so Cristiano Ronaldo will enter a fifth different World Cup finals.
It is the only bright moment for his season, as Manchester United will end the campaign empty-handed despite signing CR7 from Juventus.
His exit so late into the transfer window also affected the Bianconeri, who struggled to find their shape under Max Allegri once Ronaldo had left.
“It’s natural that there’s an impact on the players when someone of that quality leaves, especially considering the way it went down, with uncertainty until the final day,” added Danilo.
“He was a reference point on the pitch, so afterwards we had to come together, share out the goals and the scoring opportunities that had before been just for Cristiano Ronaldo.”
[email protected], le parole di @2DaniLuiz sull’eliminazione degli @Azzurri, @Cristiano e #Qatar2022 https://t.co/e63fI3XWBq
— Gianluca Di Marzio (@DiMarzio) March 30, 2022
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