U20 WORLD CUP
Who is Simone Pafundi? The scorer of the free-kick that send Italy to the U20 World Cup final
Pafundi’s late goal in Italy’s 2-1 win over South Korea in the Under-20 World Cup sent his side to the final.
And with one swing of his left leg, Simone Pafundi became the man of the moment. His late goal in Italy’s 2-1 win over South Korea in the Under-20 World Cup semi-final was the cherry on top of the cake of a stunning tournament for the team in blue.
He was brought on as a late substitute by the manager and stepped up when his side needed him the most, striking the ball past the nervous Korean wall twenty yards from goal. The Asian goalkeeper did not move as the unsuspecting ball was sent up, over and down again, smacking into the back of the net to send the Europeans into a euphoric state.
Who is Simone Pafundi?
Simone Pafundi was born in Monfalcone in northern Italy in 2006. The 17-year-old started his youth career at UFM Monfalcone before moving to Udinese in 2014, where he played for the youth side for eight years.
In 2022 he made his debut for the first team after starring for the under 19s, and made his first senior appearance as a substitute in a 4-0 win over Salernitana. He was the first player born in 2006 to make his debut in Italy’s top division.
Pafundi has played 9 times for Udinese since his debut and has even made his debut for the Italian national team, playing against Albania in November 2022. It will not be the last time the left-footer’s name will be mentioned on the world stage, especially if he carries on whipping in free-kicks like he does.