Spain vs. Italy – UEFA Euro 2012 Group C Match Preview
Starring two teams known for their footballing brilliance, the first game in Group C is truly a battle of the titans. The clash between Italy and Spain is without a doubt one of the most anticipated matches of the group phase.
After being eliminated from the 2010 World Cup by the Spanish, the Azzurri hope to surprise the reigning champions. Unfortunately for the Italians, their latest performance, particularly that of their last three friendly losses, have the three points leaning in favor of the Spanish.
Will Iker Casillas be able to captain Spain into victory?
Italy must focus on a strong midfield to stand a chance against the ones in red, who boast of dominating possession throughout the game regardless of its opponent.
A good choice for head coach Cesare Prandelli is Liverpool midfielder Alberto Aquilani, who can work on feeding the ball for the Azzurri forwards. Prandelli also counts on Andrea Pirlo, perhaps the best player on the Italian squad, to create goal scoring opportunities.
Will Mario Balotelli (left) be the difference for Italy?
As for the Spanish, they possess a team capable of benching stars like Fernando Torres. Coach Vicente Del Bosque will rely heavily on its midfield to keep the pressure and Pirlo off the ball.
Can Fernando Torres (left) the coveted start as striker?
All signs point to a Spain victory, though a lack of motivation may prove to be the Achilles Heel of “La Roja”. Italy has nothing to lose and everything to gain, so the Spanish must stay hungry if they want to leave the match with any points in their favor.