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Cesc goes to the rescue against Italy.
Group C. Ireland, I'm glad you qualified you because you always bring a passionate following to any major tournament you qualify for. That said, Ireland's lack of quality was exposed against Croatia, and it will be difficult to imagine them beating either Italy or Spain.
That said, Euro 2012 was more fun with a bit of green in the stands.
The men from the Emerald Isle will face Spain next. While the Spanish attack wasn't in high gear against Italy (and certainly not helped by Fernando Torres' lack of form), the defending champions should be able to take an advantage of an opening or two in any defense they find to snatch the three points.
As for the other two teams in Group C, the Italy-Croatia winner (if there is one) will probably determine who advances to the quarterfinals. Italy showed they're not the Azzurri of old by not simply just dedicating themselves to defending.
If Mr. Balotelli has his head on straight, they have several formidable options in attack with him, Antonio Cassano and Antonio Di Natale. It will interesting what formation Italy uses against Croatia, who will lean on Mario Mandzukic to reproduce the magic he displayed against Ireland. If he can, watch out for the Croatians. But will their back line hold up against Italy?
My prediction: Italy and Spain advance.