Italy 1-2 France: Valbuena, Gomis Cancel out El Shaarawy
FIFA International Friendly—Stadio Ennio Tardini, Parma, Italy at 2.50pm ET.
Full Time: Italy 1-2 France
Scorers: El Shaarawy (34'), Valbuena (36'), Gomis (68').
Salvatore Sirigu; Christian Maggio, Andrea Barzagli (Leonardo Bonucci, 47'), Giorgio Chiellini, Federico Balzaretti; Riccardo Montolivo (Alessandro Florenzi, 51'), Marco Verratti (Emanuele Giaccherini, 51'), Claudio Marchisio (Andrea Pirlo, 51'); Antonio Candreva (Sebastian Giovinco, 69'), Mario Balotelli, Stephan El Shaarawy (Alessandro Diamanti, 72')
Gianluigi Buffon, Morgan De Sanctis, Davide Astori, Federico Peluso, Davide Santon, Mattia Destro, Emiliano Viviano
Hugo Lloris; Matheu Debuchy (Anthony Reveillere, 47'), Mamadou Sakho, Laurent Koscielny, Patrice Evra; Etienne Capoue, Blaise Matuidi, Moussa Sissoko (Benoit Tremoulinas, 88'); Matheu Valbuena (Yoann Gourcouff, 72'), Olivier Giroud (Bafetimbi Gomis, 63'), Franck Ribery (Jeremy Menez, 63').
Steve Mandanda, Mickael Landreau, Adel Rami, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Maxime Gonalons, Yohan Cabaye, Dimitri Payet
Marco Verratti was the standout performer. Alessandro Florenzi and Sebastian Giovinco good off the bench too. Christian Maggio struggled.— Luca Persico (@LPCalcio) November 14, 2012
Full time: Italy 1-2 France
The games finishes in Parma and Les Bleus win it, thanks to a Bafetimbi Gomis goal, which Deschamps' men barely deserved.
Prandelli has a little smirk on his face, perhaps knowing that he will laugh loudest when Brazil 2014 rolls around. El Shaarawy will be some player by then, as will Balotelli of course.
Some promising performances tonight for the Azzurri, but Il Faraone is my man of the match.
What are your thoughts on the game? Let me know who you thought played well, and not so well, in the comments section below.
Are either of these teams contenders for the World Cup in Brazil?
Benoit Tremoulinas comes on for a tired looking Sissoko, who has worked his socks on since France took the lead.
87'—Azzurri running on empty now, but Balotelli works half a yard, again, but the move fizzles out. Game appears to be up for Italy.
85'—Big chance for Italy and the ball is driven across the area by Diamanti, the ball falls kindly to Giaccherini who smashes the cross bar, Lloris helpless.
83'—With Italy pressing hard now, Les Bleus counter with devastating effect. Menez rampaging down the left, drives the ball towards the far right corner, but Sirigu is equal to it.
Maxime Gonalons gets a run out, replacing Capoue.
80'—Italy pressing hard now and Lloris is pulled into action. Brilliantly denying Giovinco from distance with a one-handed stop to his right.
76'—Balotelli is there again! This time the City striker meets a gorgeous Pirlo free kick, but is off balance and can only head harmlessly over.
74'—Balotelli goes close for the Azzurri, glancing a header just wide of the post. Wicked ball in from Diamanti, who does brilliantly to cut in from the right side and whip the ball in with his wand of a left boot.
72'—Italy and France substitutions, again!
Alessandro Diamanti comes on for the impressive El Shaarawy. While Deschamps sends on Yoann Gourcuff for the tireless Valbuena.
70'—Gomis dribbles across the edge of the area and strikes back across himself, but Sirigu easily saves. The Lyon striker is confident now.
Sebastian Giovinco comes on for Candreva in an attacking change by Prandelli. Italy can feel hard done by, but the reality is that they are losing here.
68'—Italy 1-2 France
Bafe Gomis makes an immediate impact, sliding in to convert Patrice Evra's drilled cross. The good work game from Menez down the left, who got to the line and cut the ball back for his left-back.
Jeremy Menez and Bafe Gomis come on for Ribery and the anonymous Giroud.
61'—Tonight's danger men are in the wide areas. Ribery and Valbuena provide a real threat for France, while El Shaarawy, Maggio and Balzaretti offer Italy a threat from those areas.
Florenzi fulling earning his debut. From Serie B to a spot in Roma's XI to Italy in less than a year.— Julian(@JulianDM11) November 14, 2012
56'—The game has lost a little bit of flow due to the substitutions, but France go closest with a Ribery free kick that goes narrowly wide.
51'—Italy and France substitutions
Italy: Emanuele Giaccherini, Leonardo Bonucci and Andrea Piro come on for Marco Verratti, Claudio Marchisio and Andrea Barzagli.
France: Anthony Reveillere comes on for Matheu Debuchy.
Alessandro Florenzi comes on for Riccardo Montolivo.
47'—Quiet start to the second half. Maybe it's worth thinking about how far El Shaarawy has come in the last couple of months.
As Euro 2012 finished, it was fair to say that Il Faraone was behind Robinho, Alexandre Pato, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Antonio Cassano. Even Bojan Krkic was a little more established that the Azzurri starlet.
Since then he has become a first choice with the Rossoneri and is now the Capocannoniere of Serie A.
Tonight he scored his first international goal for Italy, so watch out Brazil 2014.
1 - Stephan El Shaarawy has scored his first goal for Italy in only his third cap. Champagne.— OptaPaolo (@OptaPaolo) November 14, 2012
Half-time: Italy 1-1 France
We arrive at the interval with the sides level, after Matheu Valbuena cancelled out Stephan El Shaarawy's opening goal.
44'—It's worth pointing out that Maggio was nowhere to be found for Valbuena's goal. The Napoli player went missing and forced Verratti to come out wide to cover, but it wasn't enough.
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