The Azzurri advances to the last eight by getting second place in Group C of the Euro Cup 2012. The Italians establish their qualification into the knockout rounds by beating already disqualified Ireland, 2-0 in the last game of group play.
The Italian squad was in a tight situation before the game started. They had tied their first two games in the group, a 1-1 game against Spain and the same outcome against Croatia.
In the last game of the group, the Italians were up against the disqualified Irish, who had lost their first two games against Spain and Croatia. Italy needed to win and depended on Spain and Croatia's outcome to an extent.
If Spain and Croatia would have tied 2-2, Italy would have been out due to intricate tie breakers used for a three way tie at the end of group play in the Euro Cup.
In the end, Spain defeated Croatia in the last minutes of their game, 1-0, and Italy ousted Ireland with two goals to none.
The outcomes of today’s games put Spain at the top of the group with 7 points, and the Italians ended in 2nd place with 5 points. No tie breakers were needed as Croatia ended with four points.
Antonio Cassano scored the first goal for the Azzurri on a header from a corner kick at the 35’ of the game. The second goal was made by Mario Bolatelli with a stupendous shot made from the top of the box as he had his back to the goal and an Irish defender leaning against him. The goal was made from a corner kick as well.
Now, Italy and Spain await the outcome of Group D to see who their next opponent is in the first game of the elimination rounds.