USA v Italy preview- Confederations Cup

Game : USA v Italy

Competition : Confederations Cup 2009, Group B

Venue : Loftus Versfeld Stadium, Pretoria

Date : 15 June 2009, Monday, 20.30 South African time.

World champions Italy face the United States of America in Pretoria on Monday evening in a Group B match that is very important to both teams.

Marcelo Lippi’s men are making their debut in the Confederations Cup, but they will be without the man who lifted the trophy three years ago in Germany- defender Fabio Cannavaro. Cannavaro’s absence means we’ll see Chiellini partner Legrottaglie in defence. Lippi is expected to go with a three man attack in the form of Quaglirella, Gilardino and Giuseppe Rossi/Iaquinta/Toni.

Italy form- last five games- all competitions- Italy scorers in brackets

Italy 4-3 New Zealand ( Alberto Gilardino*2, Vicenzo Iaquinta*2)
Italy 3-0 Northern Ireland ( Giuseppe Rossi, Sergio Pellissier, Pasquale Foggia)
Italy 1-1 Ireland ( Vicenzo Iaquinta)
Montenegro 0-2 Italy ( Andrea Pirlo, Giampaolo Pazzini)
Brazil 2-0 Italy

While Italy are making their Confederations Cup debut, the USA are making their third appearance in the tournament. They earlier competed in 1999 and 2003.

With Frankie Hejduk injured, Jonathan Spector should play on the right. Onyewu, Bornstein and Carlos Bocanegra will be the other three in defence. The attacking threats will come from Dempsey and Donovan on the wings, and Altidore and Casey upfront.

USA form- last five games- all competitions- USA scorers in brackets

USA 2-1 Honduras ( Landon Donovan, Carlos Bocanegra)
Costa Rica 3-1 USA ( Landon Donovan)
USA 3-0 Trinidad and Tobago ( Jozy Altidore*3)
El Salvador 2-2 USA ( Jozy Altidore, Frankie Hejduk)
USA 2-0 Mexico ( Michael Bradley*2)

The USA last met Italy in the 2006 World Cup. The game ended in a 1-1 draw with Daniele De Rossi getting a four match ban for elbowing a USA player. I think the Italians just have enough to get past the USA.

Italy 2-1 USA ( Iaquinta, Chiellini/ Altidore)

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