Uruguay vs. Italy: Starting Lineup and Matchup Analysis For Confed Cup 3rd Place

Samuel MarsdenFeatured ColumnistJune 28, 2013

FORTALEZA, BRAZIL - JUNE 27:  The Italy players react during a penalty shootout during the FIFA Confederations Cup Brazil 2013 Semi Final match between Spain and Italy at Castelao on June 27, 2013 in Fortaleza, Brazil.  (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
Clive Mason/Getty Images

Italy will face Uruguay in the third-place playoff at the Confederations Cup in Brazil, after a penalty shootout defeat to Spain on Thursday evening.

The Italians were arguably the better side against La Roja in normal time in Fortaleza. Vicente del Bosque's side took over in extra time though, before eventually progressing on penalties; Italy defender Leonardo Bonucci the only player to miss from 14 spot kicks.

La Celeste had been dumped out late on by the hosts Brazil the previous night.

Edinson Cavani had cancelled out Fred's first-half opener, but Paulinho's 86th-minute header ensured it was the Brazilians heading to the final.

Oscar Tabarez's men will now face off against and Cesare Prandelli's team in Salvador on Sunday for the right to finish third in the competition.


Starting Lineups 

Even though both sides will want to win the match, it's difficult to speculate how strong their lineups will be.

The Azzurri squad will contain a lot of tired legs following 120 tough minutes against Spain and, following a long season, Prandelli may choose to rotate.

Uruguay have had an extra day since their semifinal defeat and, with that in their favor, may opt to go with a stronger side.

Italy: Gianluigi Buffon; Leonardo Bonucci, Daniele De Rossi, Giorgio Chiellini; Christian Maggio, Alberto Aquilani, Riccardo Montolivo, Mattia De Sciglio; Claudio Marchisio, Sebastian Giovinco; Stephan El Shaarawy

Uruguay: Fernando Muslera; Maxi Pereira, Diego Godin, Diego Lugano, Martin Caceres; Arevalo Rios, Alvaro Gonzalez, Cristian Rodriguez; Edinson Cavani, Luis Suarez, Diego Forlan


Matchup Analysis

Italy have probably been the most flexible with their squad so far, with 15 players having started at least two games and a further five all being involved at some point.

In their three group matches they favored an industry standard 4-2-3-1 formation. Against Spain, however, Prandelli switched things up and the Italians went with a system which had a 3-4-2-1 feel to it.

Despite not scoring, it was interesting to note that they didn't concede with that formation in the semifinal; they had conceded eight goals in their three previous Confederations Cup games.

Prandelli has not always been predictable though, and he's as likely to revert back to 4-2-3-1 against the Uruguayans as he is to stick with the formation which should have toppled Spain.

Uruguay have used three different formations in this tournament, as Tabarez has sought a way to fit Cavani, Diego Forlan and Luis Suarez into the same side.

In their group opener against Spain they went for a straight forward 4-4-2, omitting Forlan from the starting lineup.

He was back for the next game though, Uruguay reverting to 4-3-3 in their 2-1 win against Nigeria. The Tahiti game can be classed as an anomaly; a much-change Celeste side lined up in a more attacking 3-4-3 system. 

For the semifinal with Brazil, it was back to 4-3-3, and that's almost certainly how they'll start against Italy.