Mario Balotelli had said after scoring twice against Germany in the semi final that he wished to score four goals for Italy in the final against Spain at Euro 2012 to be played at Kyiv’s Olympic Stadium on Sunday.
The question being asked by all and sundry is, ‘would Balotelli succeed in stopping the Spaniards from getting the first back to back Euro Cup and their third conssecutive major tournament crwon’. If Italy win it would be their second European title.
Surely, it is not going to be just Balotelli. For Italy there is Andrea Pirlo who can rip apart any defense by his swift passes and long range swerving shots. Antonio Cassano is another play maker who has instrumental in many set ups for the goal.
For Spain Sergio Ramos, Xabi Alonso, Andres Iniesta, Xavi and Fernando Torres are players to wathc who can easily wreak havoc in oppostion camp.
Both the teams are having their goalie as captain. Itlay’s Gianluigi Buffon and Spain’ Iker Casillas are having great run at the nets. It would be testing for both of them because if there is no result in regular time then penalty kicks would decide the fate.
Apart from the players Portugal’s Pedro Proenca would be remembered in years to come as he will take charge of Sunday’s Euro 2012 Final as referee.
Both Italy and Spain have been the two most impressive sides in the tournament scoring 6 and 8 goals respectively. When they met three weeks ago in Gdansk they were tied at 1-1. But this is not going to be end like because there cannot be joint winners.
World Champion Spain is defending the title and they have a run of 14 successive wins and remaining unbeaten in 19 successive matches but has a very weak record against Italy. They have not beaten the Azzurri in their last ten competitive encounters.
Spain coach Vicente del Bosque, like the Germans says, ‘There’s some history but we have to look to the present’. del Bosque sums up the performance of both teams quite aptly. He says that his team and the four time World Cup winners Italy have played quite similar game in this tournament. Both teams were in the same group and have both won on penalties. According to del Bosque their style of play is also very similar so there’s not a great difference between the teams.
del Bosque and Italy coach Cesare Prandelli both are very cautious of each other pouring praises. del Bosque says that Italy and Spain have lived parallel lives and now they have to be at the level that a final demands. Prandelli clearly suggests that Spain are the favourites in terms of experience and consistency. But he insists that but they are not going to make it easy for the Spaniards.
Prandelli thinks that their best hope lies in an attacking approach. He analyses that Spain’s strength is both keeping the ball possession and getting back the possession. He talks of taking advantage of opportunities. He says that his team would play the same game as they played against England and Germany in the knock out statge.