Euro 2012 Group C Day: The Day We Learn About the Azzurri

Oh how we’ll miss Gennaro Gattuso.

The biggest wildcard in these Euros? Has to be the Italians, no?

They come in having lost their two friendlies this year, to the States (1-0) and Russia (just last week, 3-0) respectively. The Blues have two attackers that could be described as “combustible,” but more appropriately. Mario Balotelli needs no introduction and neither does Cassano–a TSG fave and 360-degree player.

The midfield see DeRossi of course and surprisingly Pirlo who will be Italy what Beckham is to England. Wait, scratch that.

The defensive spine is all Juventus with Buffon backing Bonucci and Chiellini–who can’t decide just how good he wants to be, but despite Juventus decorated with the Scudetto this year this year at the international level the backline is decidedly ho-hum….meaning coach Cesare Prandelli may actually look to push up the field and show more attacking verve.

What’s go on here? For more on Italy, their opponent Spain, Ireland and the Table Clothes, here’s your preview.

Group C goes live today!

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13 responses to this post.

  1. I see Vicente del Bosque found a way to get more CM’s on the pitch than Klinnsmann.

    Reply

  2. Posted by Nelsonaoatl on 2012/06/10 at 9:42 AM

    Spain just needs to shoot sooner. it’s like they’re hoping to get to buffon’s twelve.

    Italy on the other hand is testing Iker. Hoping the Italians pull this one off today.

    Reply

  3. Why is Balotelli starting over Di Natale anyway?

    Reply

    • Posted by Nelsonaoatl on 2012/06/10 at 11:22 AM

      I’m guessing Mario has the speed and power to wear down the D. My question is why weren’t the other Italians yelling man on?

      Also, thanks to Cesc for proving they could score so close to goal. Still think they could’ve shot more.

      The post game interaction between Lalas and co and Rossi was so awkward.

      Reply

    • Posted by Jared on 2012/06/11 at 5:21 AM

      Maybe they are concerned that Di Natale won’t be able to handle starting all of their games and wanted to go with a little bit of strength up front. I think Di Natale is a great spark off the bench in the second half.

      Reply

      • Posted by matthewsf on 2012/06/11 at 5:25 AM

        Oh c’mon you can’t make that comment after the fact! :> No way Balotelli starts next game.

        Reply

  4. Balotelli came to a fork in the road and decided to… turn around and go home.

    Reply

  5. Posted by dth on 2012/06/10 at 11:54 AM

    We’re going to need a reaction shot from Brad Guzan for that Shay Given blunder.

    Reply

  6. Posted by KickinNames... on 2012/06/11 at 5:59 AM

    Balotelli just cannot be trusted to eithre pefform or carry himself as a professional. Just when you think you know what you’re gettiing he pulls crap like that.
    That breakaway was one of the strangest things I’ve ever seen from a guy who knows what to do in that situation. It seriously struck me that his strange brain decided in that moment that he didn’t want to score there for Italy as some bizarre message that only he can understand.
    What else explains that?….he just stopped driblbling and waited to be tackled. Di Natale will do well with Pirlo pullnig the strings. I thought Italy looked well constructed tactically and the De Rossi Pirlo combo gives them a unique build from the back capability.

    Reply

  7. Posted by Nick on 2012/06/12 at 8:48 AM

    finally getting around to watching the Spain – Italy game and 75 minutes in I have the following thoughts:
    – Interesting putting De Rossi in the center of defense, Minus the tiki-taka, it looked exactly like Barcelona’s usual back line when not in possession with Puyol, Pique, and Mascherano.

    – Balotelli was either waiting for his strike partner to make a different run OR, and my personal opinion, he was trying to bait Ramos into a penalty. Definitely not what you’d want in your starting striker, where’s the selfishness that propels you to score goals, where’s the fire in him to at least put an effort on target. Spot on comment Southern Philly.

    – Torres… Wow, simply wow. How many strikers that start for the upper echelon of club & country soccer would be tackled like that by a keeper. Buffon is no slouch but to stay on his feet and tackle like a defender would make most in-form forwards salivate.

    – Spain’s striker-less formation almost worked. They created moments where there should’ve been a chance/opportunity but then reverted to the Barcelona/Arsenal disease of trying to walk the ball into the net.

    Reply

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