Zlatan reacts to Sweden World Cup qualification in most Zlatan way ever

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"I haven't resigned because I haven't yet spoken to the (FIGC) president (Carlo Tavecchio)", he told reporters after Italy were held goalless by Sweden and lost their European play-off 0-1 on aggregate to miss next year's Finals in Russian Federation.

Midfielder De Rossi, 34, who has also called time on his worldwide career, added: 'It's a black moment for Italian football and a really dark one for us players who were a part of the past two years'. Images featuring pizza, Ikea furniture, and meatballs began emerging as football fans visualised the Italian defeat.

"I have never experienced anything like this", said goalkeeper Robin Olsen.

The Azzurri, the four-time champions, have become the latest high-profile team to miss out on Russian Federation 2018. "For years I've had this feeling that Italian football is a little like Italy itself, which lives a lot in the past when the reality is that it finds itself dealing with things that are quite intense, even shocking", said Matteo Maragnano, peeling oranges in a cafe near Milan's gothic cathedral. The last time the Scandinavians participated was in 2006. "We just had to sit there and hope that we could hang on", said Sweden coach Jan Andersson. "This match showed our collective strength. So we adapted and we play in another way now".

Mikael Lustig nearly scored an own goal when his deflection hit the bar.

Carlo Ancelotti has been tipped by many to become Ventura's replacement.

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Brazilian-born midfielder Jorginho was thrust into his first competitive worldwide while Napoli's flamboyant winger Lorenzo Insigne was once again on the bench.

Sweden's Lustig was back from suspension, with Johansson starting in place of the injured Albin Ekdal.

Speaking after the game, Barzagli, 36, said it was painful, adding: "I don't know what we missed".

Florenzi thought he had scored on 53 minutes with a flying volley from Matteo Darmian's cross, but it went wide.

It marks the first time Italy will not be at a World Cup since 1958 when, coincidentally, Sweden were the host nation.

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