Ahead of every single game in the last few years, there has been the feeling of not really knowing which Italy you're going to get.
The Italy that wins the Euros in the midst of a 37-game unbeaten run - or the one that fails to qualify for back-to-back World Cups? The Italy that qualifies for the Nations League final or the one gets thrashed by Argentina in the Finalissima? The Italy that beats England 1-0 before the World Cup or the one that loses 5-2 to Germany?
All this confusion makes it difficult to remember that Italy begin their 2024 European Championship qualification campaign against England on Thursday night as holders of the entire competition. No reminders are needed as to how they managed to claim that status
The top two in Group C qualify for Euro 2024 but three do not go into two. Even with a superb record over England - with just one defeat in their last 10 games over the past 25 years - can Italy avoid being the odd one out again?