Wednesday, 17 October 2007

Friendly: Lucarelli brace sinks South Africa

Friendly: Italy 2-0 South Africa (Siena)
Cristiano Lucarelli scored two late goals to give an experimental Italy side a 2-0 win over South Africa in a friendly at Siena's Stadio Artemio Franchi.

Following the crucial 2-0 win over Georgia in the Euro 2008 Group B qualifier at the weekend, the Azzurri had a rest day from the qualification campaign ahead of November's crunch ties against Scotland in Glasgow and the Faroe Islands.

Coach Roberto Donadoni handed Alessandro Gamberini, Alessandro Rosina and Riccardo Montolivo their full debuts, and brought on Andrea Dossena and Antonio Nocerino from the bench for their first caps.

The World champions hogged possession in the first half but struggled to produce clear chances against the 2010 World Cup hosts.

Defender Cristian Zaccardo came close with a header with 18 minutes on the clock while captain Daniele De Rossi drove a shot just over the bar six minutes later.

An Alberto Gilardino effort that hit the post was the highlight of the second half until Lucarelli took advantage of poor defending to nod home a Dossena cross eight minutes from time.

The Shakhtar Donetsk striker sealed the win with another header in the final moments of the game.

Italy now travel to Scotland on November 17 and host the Faroes on November 21 in search of four points that will guarantee their place at next years European Championship finals in Austria and Switzerland.

France 2-0 Lithuania
Georgia 2-0 Scotland
Ukraine 5-0 Faroe Islands
[Group B Round-up]

Source: UEFA

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