England Vs Italy: Rooney Vs Balotelli

24 June 2012 02:37
England face Italy in the quarter-finals in a game which looks very finely balanced as both sides will really fancy their chances. Many see the games key figures as Wayne Rooney for England and Mario Balotelli for the Italians. The pair both have one goal to their names this tournament and couldn’t be closer as they head into this quarter-final grudge match.

All competitions last season

   Rooney             Balotelli
Apps Goals       Apps Goals
  44       35         32      17

Mario performed well in stages for Manchester City last season and the English back line will have to remain focused if they are to keep the hit-man quiet. Rooney however showed a lot more consistency last season being beaten only by Robin van Persie to the Premier league golden boot. Fortunately, England’s Joleon Lescott will mark Mario who he has played with at Manchester City for two years now. If anyone will know what to expect it will be Lescott who is used to marking the striker in training week in week out. “Coming up against Mario is obviously going to be a tough task. I know the quality he possesses, he is quick, strong and can create something out of nothing”.

Italy have confirmed that Giorgio Chiellini will miss the game with England on Sunday which is a real blow to their backline. The Juventus centre-half was solid against Spain and Croatia and Rooney will see that as a huge boost to his chances of grabbing a goal on Sunday. As Steven Gerrard is looking back to his best and Rooney regaining match fitness the England camp will be quietly confident of edging this tight encounter and making the semi-finals of the competition.

History isn’t on England’s side though as their quarter-final record is dismal – England have lost seven of 10 games at either European championship finals or the World cup.

Source: DSG