Wednesday, 9 September 2009

Azzurri performance impresses Lippi

Italy coach Marcello Lippi could not hide his delight after his side took a giant step towards qualifying for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

Marcello LippiThe Azzurri beat Bulgaria 2-0 with first-half goals from Juventus pair Fabio Grosso and Vincenzo Iaquinta to go closer to the finals in South Africa.

"I am very happy for my players," said Lippi after the game in Turin. "Our team has a lot of quality.

"We have scored two splendid goals but we could have scored four or five."

Lippi's men showed an improved performance from their 2-0 triumph over Georgia on Saturday.

"We are getting there," he said. "We are still not at our top of our form."

The outcome sees the world champions go four points clear at the top of Group Eight and leaves them needing just a point away to second-placed the Republic of Ireland in October to go through.

"With a draw in Dublin we will qualify," said Lippi. "Even if we were to lose that game we would still have another game (against Cyprus) to make it to South Africa next year."

Italy, who are now guaranteed at least a play-off spot, conclude their qualifying campaign against Cyprus in Parma on 14 October.

Source: Sporting Life

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