Monday, June 22, 2009

Confederations Cup Match Report: Brazil 3 - 0 Italy

Brazil Cruises into the Semi finals, Sets up date with South Africa

Kaka shoots at Italian goal - Image from Reuters

Brazil maintained their 100% record at the 2009 Confederations Cup as they made light work of Italy, sweeping the World champions aside with ease in a commanding 3-0 win at the Loftus Stadium on Sunday night.

Italy did off to a relatively brisk start, possibly surprising their opponents with purposeful attacking play early on.

However, it was Brazil who had the first couple of chances in the game, the best falling to Robinho, who skewed his shot wide of goal after having been released into the box by Luis Fabiano’s nicely weighted sixth minute ball.

In the 15th minute Fabiano found himself through on goal, but Italian keeper Gianluigi Buffon showed his experience, and excellent anticipation, as he raced off his line to intercept the ball.

The next chance fell the way of Italy as lively midfielder Mauro Camoranesi sent a cracking half-volley from 25-yards out just over the bar in the 31st minute.

The game continued to swing from end to end and Brazil nearly broke the deadlock in the 33rd minute through an unlikely source – central defender Lucio. The Bayern Munich hard-man showed great skill to beat two Italian defenders inside the box, before sending an angled shot goal-wards, which struck Daniele De Rossi and deflected onto the upright.

By now Brazil were very much in the ascendancy, and took a deserved 35th minute lead when Fabiano slotted home with a clinical shot from eight yards out after the Italian defence had failed to clear their box.

A further two goals in quick succession then left Italy pretty much dead and buried as Brazil gave two examples of devastating counter-attacking play.

In the 43rd minute South American team broke with lightning speed up the field, the ball reaching Robinho, who played a one-two with Kaka, before the ball broke kindly for Fabiano to net his brace; 2-0 Brazil.

Barely a minute later Brazil added a third, Kaka again involved as he picked the ball up deep and set Robinho free down the left wing, who looked to try and pick out Fabiano. Italian defender Andrea Dossena managed to intercept the pass, but only succeeded in redirecting the ball past Buffon and into his own goal.

Azzurri were onto the offensive early in the second half as they desperately tried to force their way back into the game, with goal difference of crucial importance. Dossena put in a couple of dangerous crosses from the left, but it was from one such delivery that Brazil again countered with breath-taking precision, although Robinho’s poor finish meant there was no addition to the scoreboard.

Midway through the second half and Marcello Lippi’s side created a succession of chances, but Julio Cesar was up to the task, saving comfortably from Alberto Gilardino and Simone Pepe, before being more severely tested with a stinging drive from Giuseppe Rossi.

Again though Dunga’s charges showed their potential threat on the counter as Kaka came within inches of adding a fourth after yet another quick break up field in the 68th minute.

There was a chance for Azzurri in the 75th minute when some unorthodox goal keeping from Cesar saw the ball worked to Pepe, but his shot was blocked by a defender.

De Rossi and Dossena had late strikes but it just wasn’t Italy’s night as yet another effort from the European side failed to find the back of the net.


Brazil: Julio Cesar; Maicon, Lucio, Juan (Luisao 23’), Andre Santos; Felipe Melo, Kaka, Gilberto Silva (Kleberson 85), Ramires (Josue 85’); Luis Fabiano, Robinho

Italy: Gianluigi Buffon; Andrea Dossena, Giorgio Chiellini, Fabio Cannavaro, Gianluca Zambrotta; Mauro Camoranesi, Riccardo Montolivo (Simone Pepe 46’), Daniele De Rossi, Andrea Pirlo; Vincenzo Iaquinta (Giuseppe Rossi 38’), Luca Toni (Alberto Gilardino 57’)

This report is featured at MTN Football.

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