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Soccer

El Tri’s Passing Game Not Enough Against Italy

Mario Balotelli

Станислав Ведмидь (Wikimedia Commons)

Mexico and Italy opened up their Confederation’s Cup campaign in a decently entertaining match which saw the Italians come out on top. The match brought us chances, passes, tackles, goals and of course mistakes. In the end, the side with the more mistakes gave up all three points for their first loss of 2013 – Mexico.

In his 100th international appearance and a little while after losing his young son, Andrea Pirlo scored a stunning free kick goal that will not be soon forgotten. At the age of 34, Pirlo still runs, passes and scores the way he always has. His legs do not seem to be giving out while his passion and intelligence for the game seem to be growing on a gamely basis. His presence in the midfield and on the field in general has been nothing short of mandatory for the Italians. That goal only proves that he is still a classy player.

Mario Balotelli is a name that has been buzzing around the soccer world for the right as well as the wrong reasons. His scoring ability is unquestionable as he proved so by scoring the winner in yesterday’s 2-1 victory. However, a bad part of his game that is only hindering his further development, is his temper.

Mexican captain, Gerardo Torrado tackled “Balo” a bit dirtily but did win the ball. The Italian striker then rose up and stepped right up to him and had some words. There was no need for it since it was innocent and he did not get hurt by the challenge. Antics like that only ruin his game as well as his image. Once he learns how to control that anger, he can be even better.

Mexico’s  Giovanni Dos Santos showed some confidence that has been hidden for quite some time as he took on players in one-versus-one situations and even won a penalty. That spot kick was converted home by Javier Hernandez which tied the game in the first half.

Besides the hustling, passing and scoring the one goal, Mexico were not impressive and were extremely shaky on the defensive end. If they do not improve their back line, they will allow goals against Brazil and Japan. Passing and building up offensive plays are important aspects of the game, but defending is just as necessary.

Italy play Japan while Mexico face the hosts Brazil on Wednesday in their next group stage matches.