2018 World Cup Qualifier
Result: Israel 1-3 Italy
Date: 05 September 2016
Venue: Sammy Ofer Stadium
Italy began their 2018 World Cup qualifying campaign with a 3-1 win over Israel on Monday evening.
The Italians saw most of the ball in the early stages and took the lead after 14 minutes when Graziano Pelle turned home Luca Antonelli's low cross from the flank.
The visitors were then awarded a penalty after 30 minutes when Giacomo Bonaventura was brought down in the box. Antonio Candreva stepped up and made no mistake from 12-yards, out.
Israel reduced the deficit five minutes later courtesy of a fine strike from Tal Ben Chaim fom the edged of the box.
The Italian nearly restored their two-goal advantage on the stroke of halftime, but Pelle's first-time strike forced David Goresh into a fine save.
However, Italy were reduced to 10 men after 55 minutes when Giorgio Chiellini was sent off for a second bookable offence.
The Azzuri opted for a double change after the hour-mark, as they introduced Angelo Ogbonna and Alessandro Florenzi.
Despite being a man down, Italy restored their two-goal lead in the 83rd minute, as Pelle nodded the ball into the path of Ciro Immobile, who fired a low effort past Goresh.
Italy managed to see out the closing stages with relative ease to begin their campaign with three points.