Brazil send Italy crashing out of Confederations Cup

June 22nd, 2009 - 5:39 am ICT by IANS  

Pretoria, June 22 (DPA) Brazil sent world champions Italy crashing out of the Confederations Cup with a 3-0 victory in Pretoria Sunday.
Two goals from Luis Fabiano in the 37th and 43rd minutes and an own goal from Andrea Dossena in the 45th made it a humiliating evening for Italy.

Brazil now play South Africa in Johannesburg Thursday, while the US sensationally finished runners-up in Group B with a 3-0 defeat of Egypt in Rustenberg, and play Spain on Wednesday in Bloemfontain.

It was Italy’s biggest defeat to Brazil since a 4-1 loss 33 years ago, and came 39 years to the day they were beaten by the Brazilians by the same scoreline in the 1970 World Cup final in Mexico City.

Three successive wins leave Brazil top of the group on nine points, with USA, Italy and Egypt all on three.

A near capacity crowd in the Loftus Versfeld Stadium saw Marcello Lippi’s side - the oldest in the tournament - disintegrate in the first half.

Veteran captain Fabio Cannavaro, making his 126th appearance to equal the national record set by the recently retired Paolo Maldini, had a first half he will want to forget.

A slip by the defender as early as the seventh minute allowed Luis Fabiano to bear down on the area before the striker slipped a pass to Ramires whose shot hit the outside of the upright.

The Italians looked shaky at the back, and after several moments of danger in their own area, Brazil again hit the post when a Lucio cross was deflected by Daniel de Rossi onto the upright.

But four minutes later the Brazilians took the lead they deserved when a mis-hit shot from Maicon found its way to Luis Fabiano. The Italians appealed for offside but Cannavaro was too slow coming out and the Sevilla striker turned to beat Buffon.

A second followed six minutes later when Robinho fed Kaka whose return pass across goal was missed by the sliding de Rossi and Luis Fabiono was on hand to clip the ball over Buffon.

The half ended disastrously for the Azzurri when two minutes later Robinho broke clear from his own half and squared to Ramires. In attempting to block the pass Andrea Dossena turned the ball into his own net.

Despite the scoreline, the Italians knew they still had everything to play for and there was far more purpose in their play after the break as they sought the goal which might have been enough.

Substitutes Giuseppe Rossi and Alberto Gilardino and Andrea Pirlo all tried their luck with shots, while Simone Pepe had a shot blocked but it was Brazil who still looked nearer scoring, and Kaka went close with a hot wide.

De Rossi flashed a shot wide as the game ran into stoppage time, and Dossena blasted over in what was the last chance in a sorry night for the Azzurri.

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