Brilliance on display, Italy in Round of 16, to face Australia….

Round 1
Italy defeated Czech Republic 2-0
Goals: Marco Materazzi, Filippo Inzaghi (Italy)

The Azzurris played a great team game of football yesterday in a Marco Materazzihigh profile match of the preliminary rounds of the world cup finals, easing past the FIFA second ranked Czech Republic. The goals came from the substitute defender Marco Materazzi and the veteran Filippo Inzaghi. With that the Czechs exited the world cup and Italy advanced through to the Round of 16 as the Group E champions. Italy will face Australia in the pre-quarters. In another game, Ghana beat USA 2-1 and ensured a game against Brazil in the Round of 16.

It was a sensible tactic by the coach Marcelo Lippi to use a lesser number of forwards and thereby increase the strength of the defence and midfield. Since Italy only needed to draw the game, he used 4-3-2-1 style and not the 4-3-1-2 style. The midfield was backed up heavily. Francesco Totti and Mauro Camoranesi were used as the 2’s and Alberto Gilardino was the only striker. Luca Toni was omitted from the starting line-up and he wasn’t needed as they had a goal’s lead in the first half itself. The changes were also unconventional. The injured Alessandro Nesta was replaced with Materazzi very early in the game. Simone Barone replaced Camoranesi and Inzaghi replaced Gilardino. All of these substitutes were having their first tastes of the world cup final round 2006.

The Italian defence was magical yet again as they did not allow the opposition to get though. Gianluigi Buffon was special at Italy’s post. For the Czechs, Pavel Nedved was hell-bent on winning the game, but goals eavaded him. The red card for Jan Polak made things even worse for them. Forza Italia………. All the best to Italy in the Round of 16!

Photo: FIFA


5 responses to Brilliance on display, Italy in Round of 16, to face Australia….

  1. <>Re: Intruder<>What do you think?? Italy needed a draw and they had to play for it. A team’s purpose is never to entertain the crowd, but play for the favourable result. So they chose the ideal ploy. They strengthened their midfield and the midfielders also did their job by getting back to the defence most of the time. It was a collective effort. They got two goals also. See, when Inzaghi scored the goal, where were the Czech defence? The best defence in world football is that of Italy, undoubtedly. You need to be good in your defence also, and not in strike. See the goal chart for Italy. 5 goals for and only 1 against and that too an own-goal! The second Fifa team Czech, fifth UA and the dark horses of the tournament Ghana, none couldn’t break their belt. They may concede in the future, but it was a collective effort and they did well to get what they wanted.Again, a team plays not for crowd pulling, but to get the desired result. 😛


  2. Ghana really did well to reach the 2nd round… Italy is definitely a gud sidethnx for dropping by my space.. c ya around


  3. <>Re: Sudeep<>Surely, Ghana deserves the title ‘Underdogs’ in this world cup finals. Waiting to see whether they can prolong it. Italy is also well balanced this time. I like Lippi’s approach to the game. 😉


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