Now We're Talking Football
Now We're Talking Football
Anto is joined by ESPN commentator and ESPNPressPass analyst Janusz Michallik to take a look back at Spain-Italy to examine how these two teams approached this tournament and why the quality of depth may have been the key factor which separated both squads and how their managers have been able to put a firm stamp on their football. We start with Spain and del Bosque and how he was able to pace and coordinate this team into an approach where the team did not have to play its best football at times yet find enough to find wins and build the momentum to a crescendo. We examine how Spain attacks opponents with possession, defends with possession and how this strategy is designed to assault opponents into making mistakes. In the case of Italy we look at Cesare Prandelli and his process over these last two years found its validation as well, taking a team from the doorstep of a group stage exit in South Africa and all the way to a European final while integrating new players and establishing a new national team style. Clearly Prandelli was the right man at precisely the right time for Italy and how he brought emotion and appreciation back to Italian football might just be the most enduring image we will remember in addition to Spain touching history. Nevertheless, Prandelli has an even bigger challenge ahead moving toward Brazil 2014 as some aging players will be replaced or have their roles redefined as more of the younger candidates are introduced into the squad. This begins with Mario Balotelli and a number of talented Azzurri players who are at the doorstep as World Cup qualification is mere weeks away. In the end, we gauge some of the real disappointments of Euro 2012 including the Netherlands and Russia who will have serious questions placed in front of them, along with Germany, France and Croatia.
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