Defeated by impressive Costa Rica

How ironic to be defeated by a team that played the Italian way, but on Friday, in the heat of Recife, the Azzurri were outdone by a tactically intelligent side that were organised defensively, played with unity and scored efficiently.

Costa Rica deserve to top their group thanks to the pure intelligence of their game plans against Uruguay and Italy. Their disciplined play and understanding of how to neutralise the strengths of their opposition is the reason behind their success.

Italy love nothing more than to play the ball out from the back, control the midfield and dictate the tempo. Technically gifted and good at holding on to the ball, they then look for the vertical passes through midfield with players ahead who love to expose the gaps and then deliver for that efficient strike up front.

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