Italy head coach Cesare Prandelli says his team have 'earned respect' after their penalty shootout loss to Spain in Brazil.
Spain defeated Italy 7-6 on penalties in their Confederations Cup semi-final on Thursday but were pushed all the way by Prandelli's team, who kept the Spaniards to just 53 percent possession over 120 minutes.
Prandelli was thrilled with how his team kept the ball against Spain but bemoaned Italy's drop in intensity after half-time.
"We played a great first half and then of course we couldn't keep up the same intensity," Prandelli said.
"We tried to play the ball low but they were very good in defence and exploited some chances on the counter-attack.
"We used (Emanuele) Giaccherini a lot, especially in the first half and I have to congratulate my team.
"As I said before, we wanted to play the way we did.
"We wanted to deal with Spain on a technical level as well, we started out this way and I want to continue this because we have the right qualities to play this way."
Prandelli said Italy, who were thumped 4-0 by Spain in the final of Euro 2012, showed they can 'compete with the best' in Fortaleza.
"We earned respect, the respect of our opponents and the awareness that we're able to compete with the best," Prandelli said.
"Spain are a great team, they have continuity and we wish to have that continuity.
"We played the ball a lot, short passes on the floor and displayed great generosity.
"When you get to the penalty kicks though, anything than happen."
But Prandelli continued by admitting Italy need to keep working on maintaining possession if they are to reach the level of Spain.
"Spain are ahead of us because they have worked on these concepts for many years, while we are still seeking our path," Prandelli said.
"In terms of character, determination and tactics, we are improving."
|Coach: Del Bosque|
for David Silva 53'
for Pedro 79'
for Fernando Torres 94'
|´I think a yellow would have been harsh´ - Noble baffled by his red card|
|Rodriguez´s quality ´unquestionable´ - Benitez|
|Abdennour chooses Valencia|
|Giovinco to fly to Italy despite injury|
|La Liga Review: Real Madrid, Celta notch big wins|
|Mihajlovic: I feel like I lost|
|Real Madrid 5 Real Betis 0: Rodriguez scores twice in Benitez´s first Bernabeu win|
|Balotelli has a lot of work to do, declares Bacca|
|Luis Enrique delighted with Vermaelen´s form|
|Bundesliga Review: Leverkusen no match for Muller-inspired Bayern, Frankfurt thump Stuttgart|
|Milan 2 Empoli 1: Adriano header seals first league win for Mihajlovic|
|Ligue 1 Review: Fekir hat-trick inspires Lyon, Reims take Lorient apart|
|Barcelona 1 Malaga 0: Vermaelen rewards patient champions|
|Muller denies Van Gaal contact|
|Pochettino not concerned about goalless Kane|
|Martinez hails ´immense´ Stones|
|Flores not concerned by lack of Watford goals|
|Evans completes West Brom switch|
|Howe remains upbeat despite concerning injuries|
|Rash Cattermole frustrating Advocaat|
|Bayern Munich 3 Bayer Leverkusen 0: Muller marks 200th appearance in style|
|Tottenham 0 Everton 0: Howard keeps hosts at bay|
|Sako gives Palace new dimension - Pardew|
|Rodgers rues self-inflicted Liverpool defeat|
|Villa were robbed during Sunderland draw, blasts Sherwood|
|Football League Review: Brighton move top, Orient maintain winning start|
|I wish I had a fourth substitute, says Chelsea boss Mourinho|
|Pulis hails West Brom match-winner Rondon|
|´Gladiator´ spirit is more important than anything - Ranieri|
|Bilic defends ´park the bus´ tactics after Anfield win|
|Pellegrini quiet on De Bruyne after record-breaking win|
|Hughes fumes at Stoke dismissals after West Brom loss|
|Mourinho: Chelsea did not deserve Palace defeat|
|Scottish Premiership Review: Celtic return to the summit as Hearts suffer surprise defeat|
|Liverpool 0 West Ham 3: Defensive woes return for Rodgers´ men|
|Manchester City 2 Watford 0: Sterling opens account as City become record breakers|
|Bournemouth 1 Leicester City 1: Vardy rescues a point|
|Chelsea 1 Crystal Palace 2: Late Ward winner seals dramatic victory|
|Stoke City 0 West Brom 1: Rondon gives Pulis win over nine-man hosts|
|Aston Villa 2 Sunderland 2: M´Vila and Lens secure hard-fought point|
|Blackett moves to Celtic on loan|
|McClaren laments ´harsh´ Mitrovic red|
|Wenger: Arsenal ´cautious´ in Newcastle win|
|Sevilla can mirror Atletico strengths - Simeone|
|Ibrahimovic and Di Maria in PSG squad for Monaco clash|
|Newcastle United 0 Arsenal 1: Mitrovic off as Coloccini own goal settles it|
|Barca´s Suarez ends Sevilla loan to make Villarreal switch|
|Allegri confirms imminent Coman departure|
|Garcia demands more ahead of Juve clash|
|Knee injury sidelines Ozil|
|Dortmund boost defence with Mainz´s Park|
|Ruddy hoping to impress Hodgson|
|Wolfsburg proved there is life after De Bruyne - Hecking|
|Van Gaal unsure if Romero will replace De Gea long-term|
|Dzeko wants Totti partnership at Roma|
|No excuses for City - Pellegrini|
|San Jose Earthquakes 1 LA Galaxy 0: Salinas´ header levels Cali Clasico tally|
|Koeman plays down expectations|
|Stuttgart´s Langerak suffers surgery setback|
|Rodgers hails Milner´s leadership, mentality|
|Conte hints at Giovinco recall, doesn´t rule out Balotelli|
|Martinez slams Chelsea over Stones pursuit|
|Leverkusen are title contenders - Guardiola|
|Babel in sexism controversy|
|Pellegrini prepared to wait for Otamendi|
|Sevilla v Atletico Madrid: Llorente hoping to repay faith|
|Veloso back for Portugal|
|Kranevitter joins Atletico on five-year deal|
|Maiga leaves West Ham for Al Nassr|
|Blackburn Rovers 0 Bolton Wanderers 0: Lancashire derby ends in stalemate|
|Coutinho, Rafinha called into Brazil squad|
|Guingamp 2 Marseille 0: Privat and Benezet inflict more misery on visitors|
|Wolfsburg 3 Schalke 0: Hosts canter to victory without De Bruyne|
|Villarreal 3 Espanyol 1: Soldado inspires turnaround|
|Carpi v Inter: Mancini demands full focus|
|De Bruyne set to complete City move, reveals Allofs|
|Roma v Juventus: Champions seek to bounce back|
|Motta pens new PSG deal|
|Settled Bale in the hunt for more titles at Real|
|Blind hands Robben Netherlands armband|
|Rodriguez joins Everton from River Plate Montevideo|
|Bolivia appoint Baldivieso|
|Southampton v Norwich City: Neil holds south-coast club up as inspiration|
|Monaco v Paris Saint-Germain: Rabiot wants champions to send a message|
|Barca face tough group - Luis Enrique|
|Swansea City v Manchester United: Van Gaal celebrates 50th game in charge|
|Herrera pushing for United start, says Van Gaal|
|Borussia Dortmund v Hertha Berlin: Tuchel puts perfect record on the line|
|Michu still not part of my plans if he stays – Monk|
|Hughes not expecting late transfer deals at Stoke|
|FIFA or bust in Platini´s presidency bid|
|Cuadrado struggles to explain Chelsea snub|
|Atletico seal Borre deal|
|Schalke loan Hojbjerg from Bayern|
|Sissoko in contention to face Arsenal|
|Advocaat confident of more signings, but De Guzman not among them|
|Berahino ´not just a lump of meat´ - Pulis|
|Ajax set to face Champions League quality - Van der Sar|
|Pellegrini quiet on intense De Bruyne speculation|
|Van Persie and Nani offer cause for Celtic excitement - Hawthorn|
|Lopes seals Monaco switch|
|Mourinho silent on Stones saga|
|Milan snap up Kucka|
|Can earns first Germany call-up|
|Dortmund get kind draw, Sousa takes Fiorentina back to Basel|
|Costa and Mata return for Spain qualifiers, De Gea gets the nod|
|Rodriguez omission not personal - Benitez|
|Allofs frustrated by Premier League´s financial muscle|
|Sherwood hopeful over Traore fitness|
|Leverkusen sign Kampl from Dortmund|
|Toivonen joins Sunderland on loan from Rennes|
|Markovic has Liverpool future, says Rodgers|
|Martinez insists Stones in perfect environment at Everton|
|Tottenham wrap up Son deal|
|Schmeichel wants Real target De Gea to re-sign with United|
|Cech is one of the best - Cudicini|
|Rodwell hoping for more goals|
|Thauvin needs time to settle at Newcastle – Haidara|
|Kennedy takes blame for Celtic´s loss, stands by zonal marking|
|CONCACAF Champions League Review: Comunicaciones, Motagua off the mark|
|Rooney´s contribution undervalued - Schmeichel|
|Jedinak ruled out as Socceroos make changes|
|Sampdoria not a ´discount store´ - president Ferrero|
|Montolivo: No issue with Mihajlovic|
|Gilardino signs for Palermo|
|Chelsea target ´China´s Sergio Ramos´|
|Striker search like looking for love - Pochettino|
|Hecking ´sick´ of De Bruyne talk|
|Deschamps calls up Martial, leaves out Sakho|
|´The only thing they can is long balls´ - Midtjylland´s skipper slams Southampton|
|UEFA Europa League Review: Reus leads Dortmund rout, AZ complete late comeback|
|Messi should win Ballon d´Or - Bartomeu|
|Koeman rues refereeing decisions after Europa League defeat|