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7 June 2011
• Stade Maurice Dufrasne, Liège (Luik)
Referee: S. Gumienny
Republic of Ireland
K. Andrews 36'
S. Cox 89'
90' + 5'
Game over. Italy lose to Ireland 2-0! A poor display from Prandelli's side. Confused and out of ideas from every angle.
90' + 3'
90' + 2'
Three minutes to go until the final whistle following the five minutes of injury time.
GOAL! And Ireland have doubled their lead with Cox as he slides Hunts cross home. Italy fall asleep!
Ward fires hopelessly forward. Italy break with Balzaretti, but his cross is a little long.
Montolivo's free kick is charged down by Hunt who seems to be getting to everything that comes his way.
Five minutes remain, and Ireland are holding out well for what will be great win for them.
Kelly comes on for Ireland as O'Dea goes off. The Fulham man is given time by his Italian coach.
Montolivo's shot is charged down as Italy go all out attack in desperate search for a goal.
Time is running out for the Italians as Giovinco finds Balzaretti, but Coleman makes a last-gasp challenge to stop the Palermo man.
Cassano is on the bench looking at the action, how he would love to be on the field. Giovinco continues to be the dangerman.
Giovinco is the only positive from this Italy side tonight. He is creating and dictating, but Gilardino's is slow off the mark to meet his throughball.
Prandelli is off his bench shouting instructions to his players, but little progress is being made on the pitch.
Montolivo's shot is charged down by O'Dea as la Nazionale continue to struggle. Ireland have a great sense of defending as Trapattoni's hand is obvious here.
Free kick for Italy on the edge of the box as Giovinco is fouled. It's in a dangerous area. Giovinco takes it, but the ball curls over the bar.
Italy continue to attack with Giovinco who sets up Montolivo. He finds Matri, but he is closed down.
Ireland continue to frustrate the Italians as Matri is wrongly caught offside. Prandelli's men just have no answers in a game which has started to become drab.
Cassani's cross is partially cleared, but Marchisio's shot is woeful as the ball ends up in the stands. Terrible effort. Italy are in difficulty.
Matri tries to flick it through to Gilardino, but he fails to control and the ball ends up safely in Forde's hands.
Gilardino is introduced to the fray for Pazzini as is Giovinco for Nocerino as Prandelli looks for more of an attacking threat for his side.
Despite playing with conviction for most of the game, Italy just cannot illuminate their game with a goal. Ireland hold on very well. They are playing tight and agressively.
Pazzini does well to turn the ball towards Matri who spins on it, but he drags his shot well wide of goal. Italy still struggle to penetrate up front.
Ohhh! Montolivo finds Matri, but he takes too many touches and the ball goes out of play as he fails to control well on a wet surface.
Palombo goes long in search of Chiellini, but the effort is poor.
Criscito does well to win the corner as Everton's Coleman challenges the Genoa man.
Palombo swings it in for the Azzurri, but Forde comes out to make the save.
Ireland get the second half underway as Matri wins a quick free kick after the restart.
45' + 1'
And the half ends with Nocerino smashing a long-range effort over the bar.
There will be one minute of injury time as Nocerino finds Criscito, but he is challenged off the ball before he can cross.
Trapattoni's side are well set up and they are frustrating the Azzurri as Pirlo tries to dictate some play.
Just a few minutes before the end of the half remain, but Prandelli is looking concerned. He wants an equaliser for the interval, but Italy are struggling.
The Azzurri are fighting hard to get themselves back on track, but Ireland have the psychological boost behind them on a wet night in Belgium.
Italy look stunned by Ireland's opener. The Azzurri have made all the play and have dominated, but the boys in green are ahead.
GOAL! AND IRELAND HAVE SCORED! Andrews smashes one hard and low into the bottom corner following Hunt's knock. Viviano has no chance to save it.
Free kick to Ireland on the edge of the box. Viviano comes to claim the ball following a deflection off the Italian wall.
Wonderful play by Rossi who turns superbly to feed Marchisio, but his touch is heavy and Forde can come off his line to claim the ball.
Yellow CardKeith Andrews
Italy are leading a relenteless assault on Ireland with some Barcelona-style football. Trapattoni's men can't handle the pace of the Azzurri's game.
Great shot by Nocerino which is tipped over by Forde, but the referee says no corner amid protests from the Azzurri. What a stunning strike by the Palermo man.
Ohhh! Great play by Italy as Marchisio sets up Pazzini, but he smashes the ball well wide after delaying his effort.
Rossi tees up Montolivo, but his shot is deflected, and saved by Forde. The Fiorentina man is dangerous on the edge of the box.
Hunt fouls Pirlo and he goes into the book following a poor challenge as he knees the Italian.
Yellow CardStephen Hunt
Criscito appears to be struggling with a knock. Balzaretti warms up and there could be some early changes.
Free kick to Italy as O'Dea handles the ball. It's a dangerous area in Pirlo territory. Rossi and Pirlo over the ball. Pirlo hits the wall with his curler. But, Italy keep the ball.
Rossi is causing all sorts of trouble for Ireland with his pace and quick touch. The rain is making for a fast game as the ball zips across the surface.
Ohh! What a chance for Ireland as Long drags his shot wide of the mark. The number 10 runs past a static Italy defence, but his finish goes past the wrong side of Viviano's post.
Italy starting to raise the bar as Cassani's cross puts Ireland's defence under pressure, but Nocerino cannot finish at the far post.
Ohhh! Great work by Criscito to feed Montolivo. The Fiorentina man shoots from distance, but St. Ledger heads clear.
Free kick to Ireland as Criscito fouls Keogh. It's taken short by Andrews, but Hunt makes a mess of it as he kicks the ball out of play.
Rossi is fouled from behind. The free kick is taken quickly, but Italy give away possession. Foley makes a mistake, but Rossi is unable to take advantage.
Great touch from Rossi as he controls the ball well for his side. Nazionale are playing some great one touch pass football here in Liege.
Chiellini closes down Foley as Italy come away, but Ward kicks the ball out for an Azzurri throw. The Irish are pressing high up the pitch.
And we are off as the Italians kick off. They are unbeaten this year with three wins and a draw. Pazzini wins a corner after just 30 seconds. Pirlo's effort is poor as McShane clears.
The players are out on the pitch. It's raining and Italy are all in white. Ireland in green and black kits.
And the Ireland starting XI: Forde; McShane, St. Ledger, O’Dea, Ward; Coleman, Foley, Andrews, Lawrence; Long, Cox. Subs: Murphy, Delaney, Kelly, Whelan, Treacy, Hunt, Keogh.
Here are the official line ups for the game: Italy starting XI: Viviano; Cassani, Gamberini, Chiellini, Criscito; Nocerino, Pirlo, Marchisio; Montolivo; Pazzini, Rossi. Subs: Buffon, Maggio, Balzaretti, Ogbonna, Ranocchia, Palombo, Giovinco, Cassano, Gilardino, Matri, Sirigu.
Hello and welcome to Goal.com's live commentary of the international friendly between Italy and the Republic of Ireland in Liege, Belgium.
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