Striker Jérémy Doku worked hard in his first match starting in the first eleven with the Red Devils, delivering a shining performance on Friday in Munich, but he was unable to find the key to an intransigent Italian defence.
“I was happy to start, and to have had my chance,” Doku, who plays for Rennes in France, said after the match, which ended in a 1-2 win for Italy.
With captain Eden Hazard off the bench due to injury, Doku took his place in the starting lineup. “I’m happy to have been able to be a danger and create chances. I tried to help the team,” the 19-year-old said. “It’s really a pity Eden couldn’t play. It’s not the same when he is on the field.”
“Naturally, we are very disappointed after the loss,” said the youngster, who forced the penalty towards the end of the first half. “Those who know me know that I do not fall for nothing, If I can remain on my feet, I do so.”
In the dyeing stages of the game, Doku also made a delightful solo-run dribbling pas a few Italian defenders that ended, unfortunately, with the ball flying over the Italian crossbar.
At the final whistle, he was comforted by Romelu Lukaku. “He’s an important figure in the team,” Doku said. “He speaks and communicates a lot. As a young person, he has helped me a lot both on and off the field.”