Sunday, 21 June 2009

[Azzurri] Lippi: This was not Italy

Italy coach Marcello Lippi was left despondent after his side's 3-0 defeat to Brazil meant the world champions were eliminated from the FIFA Confederations Cup.

Marcello LippiThe Azzurri were well beaten by an attacking, free-flowing Brazil who scored three times in an eight-minute spell just before half-time.

Italy finished third in the group on goal difference after the United States' shock 3-0 win over Egypt saw them snatch second place despite starting the day in last place with no points from their opening two games.

"Unfortunately we are out and we are very sorry, but you [in the media] have to be calm pushing the youngsters forward because it takes experience to win games like these, too," Lippi reacted on Rai.

"We knew that Brazil were strong, while we didn't present ourselves in the best physical condition."

Brazil struck the woodwork twice before taking the lead through Fabiano after 37 minutes. The Sevilla forward then made it 2-0 six minutes later and an own goal by Andrea Dossena just before the interval completed the scoring in Pretoria.

"If I do have any regrets it is that this was not the correct image of this team for the world to see," said Lippi.

"I know our performance was disappointing and we have to go home, but it was not the real Italy tonight.

"We will now go on holiday and buck up our ideas," Lippi concluded.

Italy were the oldest team in the competition with an average age of 28, although 35-year-old captain Fabio Cannavaro had a bitter-sweet night as he equalled Paolo Maldini's record of 126 appearances for his country.

At the post-match press conference Lippi was again asked whether it was finally time to bring in more youth ahead of the World Cup in 12 months time.

"What youngsters?," he replied. "You cannot throw seven or eight young players in at once, you need to integrate them, to change the team slowly.

"The best team I could choose was the one standing on the pitch tonight."

[FIFA Confederations Cup 2009]

Source: Reuters

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