If recent history is anything to go by, then England are in for a tough time against Italy in Sunday's Euro 2012 quarter-final.
The two countries have met 22 times in the past, with Italy having won nine of those encounters to England's seven - the last of those coming 15 years ago.
BBC Sport takes a look at some of the meetings between the two over the years:
16 November 1977, Wembley
Ray Wilkins (left) clashes with Italian goalkeeper Dino Zoff at Wembley
Needing a win to keep alive hopes of qualifying for the 1978 World Cup, England hosted Italy at a packed-out Wembley.
Four years earlier, Italy had beaten England for the first time in more than 40 years, but there was to be no repeat as Kevin Keegan converted Trevor Brooking's cross to put the hosts ahead. Keegan then turned provider for Brooking, putting the West Ham forward through on goal.
Despite the win, England failed to qualify as Italy's win over Luxemburg the following month ended their hopes of progressing.
Clemence R, Neal P, Cherry T, Wilkins R, Watson D, Hughes E, Keegan K, Coppell S, Latchford B, Brooking T, Barnes P
15 June 1980, Stadio Communale, Turin
After opening the European Championships in Italy with a disappointing 1-1 draw against Belgium, England needed to beat the home nation to progress.
The Italians had shown a lack of attacking prowess in their opener, having drawn 0-0 with Spain.
England had their own problems in attack with Trevor Francis unavailable, meaning the main goalscoring duties fell on Kevin Keegan and Gary Birtles.
However, the pair struggled to break through a tough Italy defence and a late Marco Tardelli goal settled matters in favour of the home side.
Shilton P, Neal P, Thompson P, Watson D, Sansom K, Wilkins R, Coppell S, Kennedy R, Woodcock T, Birtles G, Keegan K
6 June 1985, Azteca Stadium, Mexico City
England v Italy
- Played each other 22 times
- Italy have recorded nine wins
- England have beaten Italy seven times
- Six encounters have ended in draws
Bragging rights once again went Italy's way as they beat England in a friendly in Mexico City.
After a goalless first half, Salvatore Bagni opened the scoring in the 73rd minute but Mark Hateley levelled one minute later.
Italy snatched victory as Alessandro Altobelli fired home in the dying minutes.
Shilton P, Stevens G, Wright M, Butcher T, Sansom K, Robson B, Steven T, Wilkins R, Waddle C, Hateley M, Francis T
15 November 1989, Wembley
A 23-year-old David Platt made his international debut but otherwise this was a largely forgettable encounter as England and Italy played out a goalless draw at Wembley.
Shilton P, Stevens G, Walker D, Butcher T, Pearce S, Robson B, McMahon S, Waddle C, Barnes J, Lineker G, Beardsley P
7 July 1990, Stadio San Nicola, Bari
A penalty shootout defeat by Germany meant England missed out on a place in the 1990 World Cup final and faced Italy in the third place play-off.
Roberto Baggio had put the Italians ahead and though David Platt equalised, Paul Parker conceded a penalty that Toto Schillaci duly despatched to finish as the tournament's top scorer with six goals.
Shilton P, Stevens G, Walker D, Parker P, Wright M, Dorigo T, Platt D, McMahon S, Beardsley P, Lineker G, Stevens T
12 February 1997, Wembley
Gianfranco Zola scored 10 goals in his 35 appearances for Italy
Former Chelsea striker Gianfranco Zola handed Glenn Hoddle his first defeat as England manager with the only goal of this France 1998 World Cup qualifier.
Key players David Seaman and Tony Adams were both missing, while Hoddle gave Matt Le Tissier his first start for two years.
England found themselves a goal down after just nine minutes as an England attack broke down and Italy countered, with Zola placing a shot beyond Ian Walker.
The hosts piled on the pressure after that but the Italian defence held firm for a crucial win.
Walker I, Neville G, Campbell S, Pearce S, Le Saux G, Beckham D, Batty D, Ince P, McManaman S, Shearer A, Le Tissier M
4 June 1997 Stade de la Beaujoire, Nantes, (Le Tournoi)
The second of three meetings in 1997 between England and Italy saw the former triumph in Le Tournoi - a World Cup warm-up tournament in France.
Ian Wright opened the scoring after latching onto a beautiful through ball from Paul Scholes before the Manchester United midfielder scored the second.
England went on to win the tournament but, more significantly, the victory was The Three Lions' last over Italy.
Flowers T, Neville P, Southgate G, Keown M, Pearce S, Beckham D, Scholes P, Ince P, Le Saux G, Wright I, Sheringham T
11 October 1997, Stadio Olimpico, Rome
Paul Ince captained England in the draw against Italy in Rome to reach the World Cup
England's win over Italy in Le Tournoi gave them confidence heading to Rome that they could get the result they needed to qualify for the World Cup.
Italy, having never dropped a point at home in World Cup qualifiers, were heavy favourites to secure victory and with it their place at France 1998.
Despite the daunting task, England produced one of their best performances for years to hold the Italians to a goalless draw and collect the point they needed.
Angelo Di Livio was sent off for the hosts while Paul Ince epitomised the spirit shown throughout that England squad as the midfielder played with a blood-stained bandage around his head.
Seaman D, Campbell S, Adams T, Southgate G, Le Saux G, Beckham D, Batty D, Ince P, Gascoigne P, Wright I, Sheringham T
15 November 2000, Stadio delle Alpi, Turin
Beckham was England captain for six years, during which time he made 58 of his 115 appearances
With incoming manager Sven-Goran Eriksson watching in the stands, caretaker boss Peter Taylor fielded a youthful England side against a strong Italian side.
The game was significant for being the first with David Beckham as captain - a role he went on to perform for many years.
Critics questioned the youthful selection, but England impressed with debutant Seth Johnson going closest for the visitors.
However, Gennaro Gattuso's superb long-range strike sealed victory for Italy.
James D, Neville G, Ferdinand R, Southgate G, Barry G, Beckham D, Butt N, Parlour R, Dyer K, Heskey E, Barmby N
27 March 2002, Elland Road, Leeds
England's last encounter with Italy was a disappointing one, both in terms of result and performance.
The friendly was part of both teams' preparations for the 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea.
England were without Steven Gerrard and Paul Scholes and their absence told and though the home nation did take the lead through Robbie Fowler after 63 minutes, it served only to waken up the Italians.
Vincenzo Montella levelled four minutes later before scoring the winner from the penalty spot in the 90th minute.
Martyn N, Mills D, Southgate G, Campbell S, Bridge W, Beckham D, Butt N, Lampard F, Sinclair T, Heskey E, Owen M