Tue, Jun 18, 2013 - Page 18 News List

FIFA: Balotelli, Pirlo hand Italy winning start

AFP, RIO DE JANEIRO

A Gerardo Flores header was the best Mexico could offer as they faded away in the possible belief they had done enough to emerge with an eighth draw in 11 games, the series of stalemates holding up their attempts to qualify for next year’s World Cup, but Balotelli’s late effort, firing in after a neat flick from Emanuele Giaccherini, stunned them and saw Italy take a giant leap toward reaching the semi-finals with Brazil and Japan to come, burying the memories of an embarrassing warm-up draw with Haiti.

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