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Italy recovers to beat Albania 2-1 at Euro 2024 after conceding goal after 23 seconds

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Italy recovers to beat Albania 2-1 at Euro 2024 after conceding goal after 23 seconds
Sport

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Italy recovers to beat Albania 2-1 at Euro 2024 after conceding goal after 23 seconds

2024-06-16 05:19 Last Updated At:05:20

DORTMUND, Germany (AP) — By conceding a goal after just 23 seconds, Italy made the worst possible start to its European Championship title defense.

Thankfully for the Azzurri, it soon got much better.

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Albania's Nedim Bajrami celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

DORTMUND, Germany (AP) — By conceding a goal after just 23 seconds, Italy made the worst possible start to its European Championship title defense.

Albania's Nedim Bajrami scores his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Albania's Nedim Bajrami scores his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Albania's Nedim Bajrami, left, scores his side's opening goal in front of Italy's Alessandro Bastoni during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Albania's Nedim Bajrami, left, scores his side's opening goal in front of Italy's Alessandro Bastoni during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Italy's head coach Luciano Spalletti gives instructions during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

Italy's head coach Luciano Spalletti gives instructions during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

Italy's Alessandro Bastoni, left, scores his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Italy's Alessandro Bastoni, left, scores his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Albania's Rey Manaj, left, and Italy's Alessandro Bastoni, right, challenge for the ball during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (Bernd Thissen/dpa via AP)

Albania's Rey Manaj, left, and Italy's Alessandro Bastoni, right, challenge for the ball during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (Bernd Thissen/dpa via AP)

Albania's Arlind Ajeti reacts at the end of a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. Italy won 2-1. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

Albania's Arlind Ajeti reacts at the end of a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. Italy won 2-1. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

Italy's Nicolo Barella, second left, celebrates with his teammates after scoring his side's second goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Italy's Nicolo Barella, second left, celebrates with his teammates after scoring his side's second goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Italian players celebrate after Italy's Nicolo Barella scored his side's second goal during the Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Italian players celebrate after Italy's Nicolo Barella scored his side's second goal during the Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Italy's Alessandro Bastoni, center, celebrates with his teammate Lorenzo Pellegrini after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Italy's Alessandro Bastoni, center, celebrates with his teammate Lorenzo Pellegrini after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Italy's Alessandro Bastoni celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (Bernd Thissen/dpa via AP)

Italy's Alessandro Bastoni celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (Bernd Thissen/dpa via AP)

Albania's head coach Sylvinho gestures from the touchline during the Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Albania's head coach Sylvinho gestures from the touchline during the Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Italy's Nicolo Barella scores scoring his side's second goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (Friso Gentsch/dpa via AP)

Italy's Nicolo Barella scores scoring his side's second goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (Friso Gentsch/dpa via AP)

Italy's head coach Luciano Spalletti gestures during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Italy's head coach Luciano Spalletti gestures during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Italy's Nicolo Barella celebrates after scoring his side's second goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Italy's Nicolo Barella celebrates after scoring his side's second goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Albania's Nedim Bajrami celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Albania's Nedim Bajrami celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Albania's Nedim Bajrami celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Albania's Nedim Bajrami celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Italian players celebrate after Italy's Nicolo Barella scored his side's second goal during the Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Italian players celebrate after Italy's Nicolo Barella scored his side's second goal during the Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Italy recovered from letting in the quickest goal in the tournament’s 64-year history to beat Albania 2-1 in Dortmund on Saturday in an atmospheric Adriatic derby that immediately threatened an upset.

Nedim Bajrami thrilled a heavily pro-Albanian crowd at Westfalenstadion by pouncing on a throw-in by Italy left back Federico Dimarco that failed to reach teammate Alessandro Bastoni, before taking a touch and smashing a rising shot inside the near post.

Within 16 minutes, the Italians were ahead as Bastoni headed in Lorenzo Pellegrini’s cross to the back post in the 11th then Nicolo Barella struck home a swerving first-time shot from the edge of the area.

Barella was one of five survivors from the team that started for Italy in the penalty-shootout win over England in the 2021 European Championship final.

The pressure was on Italy’s new-look side under Luciano Spalletti to win its opener given the other teams in Group B are three-time champion Spain and Croatia, a World Cup semifinalist in 2022. Spain beat Croatia 3-0 earlier Saturday.

Bajrami’s goal gave the Azzurri a jolt and created some history — it was much quicker than the previous fastest in the tournament’s lifespan, which was 67 seconds by Russia’s Dmitri Kirichenko in 2004.

Yet they controlled the game after that, dominating possession to a backdrop of jeers and boos from a sea of red in the crowd.

It's now just one loss in 12 matches under Spalletti, who took over last August — three months after leaving Napoli following its Italian league triumph — and was tasked with restoring national pride after Italy failed to qualify for the World Cup for a second straight time.

Italy is clearly more at home in the European Championship as it goes for a record-tying third title.

AP Euro 2024: https://apnews.com/hub/euro-2024

Albania's Nedim Bajrami celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Albania's Nedim Bajrami celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Albania's Nedim Bajrami scores his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Albania's Nedim Bajrami scores his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Albania's Nedim Bajrami, left, scores his side's opening goal in front of Italy's Alessandro Bastoni during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Albania's Nedim Bajrami, left, scores his side's opening goal in front of Italy's Alessandro Bastoni during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Italy's head coach Luciano Spalletti gives instructions during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

Italy's head coach Luciano Spalletti gives instructions during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

Italy's Alessandro Bastoni, left, scores his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Italy's Alessandro Bastoni, left, scores his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Albania's Rey Manaj, left, and Italy's Alessandro Bastoni, right, challenge for the ball during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (Bernd Thissen/dpa via AP)

Albania's Rey Manaj, left, and Italy's Alessandro Bastoni, right, challenge for the ball during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (Bernd Thissen/dpa via AP)

Albania's Arlind Ajeti reacts at the end of a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. Italy won 2-1. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

Albania's Arlind Ajeti reacts at the end of a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. Italy won 2-1. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

Italy's Nicolo Barella, second left, celebrates with his teammates after scoring his side's second goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Italy's Nicolo Barella, second left, celebrates with his teammates after scoring his side's second goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Italian players celebrate after Italy's Nicolo Barella scored his side's second goal during the Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Italian players celebrate after Italy's Nicolo Barella scored his side's second goal during the Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Italy's Alessandro Bastoni, center, celebrates with his teammate Lorenzo Pellegrini after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Italy's Alessandro Bastoni, center, celebrates with his teammate Lorenzo Pellegrini after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Italy's Alessandro Bastoni celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (Bernd Thissen/dpa via AP)

Italy's Alessandro Bastoni celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (Bernd Thissen/dpa via AP)

Albania's head coach Sylvinho gestures from the touchline during the Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Albania's head coach Sylvinho gestures from the touchline during the Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Italy's Nicolo Barella scores scoring his side's second goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (Friso Gentsch/dpa via AP)

Italy's Nicolo Barella scores scoring his side's second goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (Friso Gentsch/dpa via AP)

Italy's head coach Luciano Spalletti gestures during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Italy's head coach Luciano Spalletti gestures during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Italy's Nicolo Barella celebrates after scoring his side's second goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Italy's Nicolo Barella celebrates after scoring his side's second goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Albania's Nedim Bajrami celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Albania's Nedim Bajrami celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Albania's Nedim Bajrami celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Albania's Nedim Bajrami celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during a Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Italian players celebrate after Italy's Nicolo Barella scored his side's second goal during the Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Italian players celebrate after Italy's Nicolo Barella scored his side's second goal during the Group B match between Italy and Albania at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dortmund, Germany, Saturday, June 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

LONDON (AP) — Human remains have been found in the search for a British teen who went missing almost a month ago on the island of Tenerife, Spanish police said Monday.

It is likely to be the body of Jay Slater, though formal identification has not been made, police said.

“The Mountain Rescue and Intervention Group of the Civil Guard has located the lifeless body of a young man in the Masca area after 29 days of constant search,” according to the statement. “All indications indicate that it could be the young British man who has been missing since last June 17."

LBT Global, a charity that supported Slater’s family, said the body was found with Slater’s clothing and possessions near the last location of his mobile phone.

Slater, 19, was last seen as he set out to walk from Masca, a village in the northwest of the Canary Island, to where he had been staying in Los Cristianos in the south. It was a trip that would have taken about 11 hours on foot over rugged terrain.

Slater frantically called his friend, Lucy Law, that morning and said he was “lost in the mountains, he wasn’t aware of his surroundings, he desperately needed a drink and his phone was on 1%,” she said.

Police said the body was found in a very remote area and that an autopsy will be performed “to confirm that the death was accidental.”

Slater, an apprentice bricklayer from Oswaldtwistle in northwest England, had attended a music festival the day before his disappearance.

Undated family handout issued by LBT Global on Monday July 15, 2024, of Jay Slater. Human remains have been found in the search for a British teen who went missing almost a month ago on the island of Tenerife, Spanish police said Monday. (Family Handout/LBT Global via AP)

Undated family handout issued by LBT Global on Monday July 15, 2024, of Jay Slater. Human remains have been found in the search for a British teen who went missing almost a month ago on the island of Tenerife, Spanish police said Monday. (Family Handout/LBT Global via AP)

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