Italy vs. Haiti  2 - 2

Article

Draw leaves Prandelli red-faced

12 June 2013 01:35

Italy boss Cesare Prandelli says he was 'embarrassed' following Tuesday's 2-2 draw with Haiti.

Italy, who sit 55 places above their Caribbean counterparts in the FIFA rankings, conceded twice in the final seven minutes after Emanuele Giaccherini and Claudio Marchisio had given Prandelli's men a two-goal lead.

And the 55-year-old admits the outcome was far from the morale-booster he would have hoped for ahead of his side's Confederations Cup opener against Mexico on June 16.

"It is certainly a bad result, and an embarrassing one, because a draw with Haiti is an embarrassment," he told Rai Sport.

"We arrived yesterday and made many changes. We should've been different in terms of spirit today.

"We have to take many aspects into consideration, most importantly we need to find our physical sharpness.

"We've worked towards this and you could see today we lost every single sprint, so we hope in five days the team can begin to deliver."


Article

International Friendly: Italy 2 Haiti 2

11 June 2013 23:29

Haiti staged a dramatic late comeback to earn an unexpected draw against Italy in Rio de Janeiro on Tuesday.

Cesare Prandelli's men were in command for most of the FIFA Confederations Cup warm-up game and looked to be cruising to victory thanks to goals from Emanuele Giaccherini and Claudio Marchisio.

However, Haiti were never lacking in spirit, and they clinched a draw in the dying embers of the match when Jean-Philippe Peguero netted in stoppage time after Olrish Saurel had pulled one back from the penalty spot.

Prandelli named what was very much a second-string side for the encounter - leaving the likes of Mario Balotelli and Andrea Pirlo on the bench - with Udinese's Antonio Candreva and Bologna's Alberto Gilardino handed starts.

These changes did not affect the rhythm of Italy's play however, and they took the lead just 19 seconds into the game when Giaccherini volleyed in after latching on to Candreva's left-wing cross.

Candreva almost doubled the lead when his long-range effort was saved by Haiti keeper Frandy Montrevil after 11 minutes and the midfielder, who spent last season on loan at Lazio, went close again six minutes later as he hit a right-footed shot just wide.

The chances soon dried up however as Haiti's resolve stiffened and, although Alessandro Diamanti was unlucky not to see his free-kick find the net right on half-time, the Caribbean side will have been pleased with their efforts in the opening period.

Israel Blake Cantero's men should have levelled when centre-back Kevin Lafrance headed narrowly wide from a corner.

That scare prompted Prandelli into multiple changes, with Balotelli, Daniele De Rossi, Riccardo Montolivo, Stephen El Shaarawy all thrown into the fray.

Marchisio soon followed them into the action, and it did not take long for the Juventus midfielder's introduction to have the desired impact as he slotted home after El Shaarawy's close-range shot had been saved by Montrevil following good work from Balotelli.

Italy took their foot off the gas following that strike, but the game turned six minutes from the end when Davide Astori fouled Jean-Eudes Maurice inside the area, allowing defender Saurel to step up and convert from 12 yards.

A slender defeat would have represented a good result for Haiti, but they secured one of the more famous moments in their history when Peguero latched on to a long ball over the top from Mechack Jerome to send a left-footed finish into the bottom corner and seal an unlikely draw.

Article

Italy 2-2 Haiti: Les Grenadiers snatch deserved draw against abject Azzurri

11 June 2013 14:49

Haiti struck twice in the final five minutes to earn a sensational 2-2 draw with Italy in Rio de Janeiro on Tuesday.

Emanuele Giaccherini put the Azzurri ahead inside the opening minute but they failed dismally to build on their early advantage and only managed to double their lead, through Claudio Marchisio, after the introduction of several first-team regulars in the second half.

However, Haiti were not done and after pulling a goal back when Olrish Saurel slotted home a penalty they claimed a dramatic - but wholly deserved - equaliser with just 30 seconds of injury time remaining when Jean-Phillippe Peguero fired home.

Les Grenadiers had made a slow start in their 2-1 friendly defeat to Spain in Florida at the weekend, conceding twice inside the opening 19 minutes, but Israel Blake Cantero’s men appeared to be in even worse trouble after falling a goal down to the Azzurri with just 20 seconds on the clock.

Antonio Candreva was released into space down the left-hand side and the Lazio winger hooked the ball into the middle of the area for the onrushing Giaccherini, who controlled the cross instantaneously before immediately firing past a helpless Frandy Montrevil.

However, the Haiti shot-stopper denied Italy a second goal just 10 minutes later when he flung himself across his goal to keep out a fine strike from distance from Candreva. The Biancocelesti ace, the star performer in an opening quarter dominated by the Azzurri, went close again moments later, after a jinking run into the area, but Haitian spirits were lifted by a sweet strike from Jeff Louis that stung the palms of Salvatore Sirigu in the Italy goal.

Cesare Prandelli’s men continued to look like scoring every time they got near the Haiti area, though, and Alberto Gilardino actually had the ball in the net on the half-hour mark, but the resurgent Bologna striker was correctly flagged for offside.

The veteran forward then struck the post in the 43rd minute, after failing to make sufficient contact with a low cross from full-back Mattia De Sciglio, before Rossoblu team-mate Alessandro Diamanti hit the side-netting with a curling free kick right on half-time.

A minute after the restart, Gilardino shot straight at Montrevil, after being slipped into space on the edge of the box by Giaccherini, but it was Haiti who looked the more likely scorers immediately after the restart, with an unmarked Kevin Lafrance heading wastefully wide from a corner.

Therefore, it was no surprise that Prandelli decided during this rather nervy spell for his side to bring on some of the big guns, namely Mario Balotelli, Daniele De Rossi and Riccardo Montolivo.

And Balotelli teamed up with two later arrivals, Stephan El Shaarawy and Marchisio, to make it 2-0 with 17 minutes remaining.

The volatile striker played a neat one-two with El Shaarawy before pulling the ball back for his AC Milan colleague. The 20-year-old saw his shot well saved by Montrevil, but Marchisio was on hand to tap in the rebound.

It appeared to be game over for Haiti but they set up a frantic finale when Saurel slotted home from 12 yards out, after Davide Astori had felled Jean-Eudes Maurice in the area.

Italy looked to have survived the Haitian onslaught but with just seconds to go, Peguero latched onto a long ball over the top, held off Leonardo Bonucci and drove the ball past Federico Marchetti to earn a famous draw for his country.

Article

International Friendly Preview: Italy v Haiti

10 June 2013 14:30

Italy will face Haiti in a friendly in Rio De Janeiro on Tuesday as they prepare for their FIFA Confederations Cup campaign.

The fixture will also aim to raise money for those affected by the 2010 earthquake in the Caribbean country.

With Italy flying into Brazil just one day before the match, it will be their last friendly before they begin the tournament against Group A rivals Mexico on June 16.

They are enjoying good form of late, having not lost one of their last five games but they will be eager to improve on a 0-0 draw with the Czech Republic in FIFA World Cup qualifying last Friday.

Their opponents will come into the showdown on the back of a narrow loss against Spain on Sunday which saw the side placed 62 places behind the World and European champions, lose by just one goal.

The two sides have met just once, in 1974, when Italy beat Haiti 3-1 in their first ever game in their only World Cup, but the goal from Emmanuel Sonan became a historical landmark - and he remains a national hero.

Italy's Confederations Cup squad includes big names such as Mario Balotelli, who scored 12 goals in 13 games in his debut season with Milan and the experienced Andrea Pirlo, who netted twice in their 4-0 win over San Marino at the end of May.