Saturday, 14th June
vs Italy in Manaus.
England have only met Italy in the World Cup Finals once;
losing the third-place match (1:2) in Bari at Italy 1990.
More recently, Italy beat England on penalties in Ukraine; after their quarter-final game
in Kiev ended without a goal.
Shortly after the 2012 European Championships, England did manage to
beat Italy (2:1); in Berne, Switzerland.
Roy Hodgson has decided to drop his cautious tag and start with
Raheem Sterling against Italy; maybe because word was already out that Gianluigi Buffon
Raheem Sterling showed his promise early as England started positively
Italy looked comfortable and composed, content to soak a little
pressure and distribute the ball the Azzurri way.
Twenty minutes into the game, Joe Hart was almost caught out by a
stunner from Antonio Candreva but managed to laugh it off.
England started to seem a little stagnant and soon paid the price as Pirlo dummied Marco
Verratti's corner for Claudio Marchisio who, unmarked, had enough time to pick his spot to
score past an outstrectched Joe Hart.
Italy were caught out as England replied swiftly. Raheem Sterling released Wayne Rooney
down the left, who crossed for Daniel Sturridge at the far post, to side-foot calmly past
England were lucky to remain level at the break as Italy had a couple
of the quick chances; Phil Jagielka heading Mario Balotelli's chip off the line, followed
by Antonio Candreva's shot rebounding off the post.
Half-time: England 1 - Italy 1
Italy must have watched the video of where England looked weak at half-time and put the
plan into action right after the break. Antonio Candreva raided down the right (England's
left) and crossed for Mario Balotelli - who Gary Cahill failed to get close to - to head
in at the far post.
Hodgson introduced Adam Lallana and Ross Barkley late in the second half, while Italy
brought on Antonio Cassano for Mario Balotelli.
Into injury time, Raheem Sterling become the first and only player to
enter the Dutch referee's book and Andrea Pirlo hit the bar from a free-kick, with Joe
England may have lost, showed some promise, and best of all.... still
have a chance after Uruguay lost to Costa Rica. All
they need is a killer instinct.
Final Score: England 1 - Italy 2
0:1 - Claudio Marchisio (35 mins)
1:1 - Daniel Sturridge (37 mins)
1:2 - Mario Balotelli (50 mins)
1-Joe Hart; 2-Glen Johnson, 5-Gary Cahill, 6-Phil Jagielka, 3-Leighton Baines; 4-Steven
Gerrard, 14-Jordan Henderson, 19-Raheem Sterling, 11-Danny Welbeck; 10-Wayne Rooney,
12-Salvatore Sirigu: 4-Matteo Darmian, 20-Gabriel Paletta, 15-Andrea Barzagli, 3-Giorgio
Chiellini; 23-Marco Verratti, 21-Andrea Pirlo, 16-Daniele De Rossi, 6-Antonio Candreva;
9-Mario Balotelli, 8-Claudio Marchisio.
Referee: Bjorn Kuipers - Netherlands
1 yellow card:
92 mins - Raheem Sterling (England)
Uruguay vs Costa Rica
2014 World Cup Finals - Knockout Stage.
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