Italy registered a 1-0 win over Argentina in a highly intense match in their opening game of the World Cup campaign at the Eden park, Auckland. The game was an evenly poised one with each of the two sides not willing to let go off their grip over the game. Both the sides had their fair share of chances in the game, however it was the Italian side which emerged as the superior one at the final whistle. Italy following this win have reached the top of the table of their group. Argentina on the other hand are at the bottom of the table with no points in their account besides a negative goal difference.
Much to everyone’s surprise it was Argentina who had the first major chance of the game to open the scoring. With just 2 minutes on the clock, Stabile’s deep free kick was nodded down to Larroquette who unleashed an acrobatic volley only to send her shot just high and wide of the top corner. Italy had their first major opportunity in the 10th minute when Bonansea’s neat throughball sent Giacinti through on the right hand channel, who went for a powerful strike that was too close for Correa to not gather comfortably. Italy thought they had taken the lead in the 16th minute when Caruso found the back of the net via a superb bending shot into the bottom right corner. The goal was however chopped off since Caruso while initially recieving the pass from Batting was in an offside position. Italy had another one of their goal ruled out in the 41st minute when Giacinti calmly slotted the ball past Correa with the flag being raised immediately for offside.
Argentina has possibly their best opportunity of the match in the 50th minute via a free kick. Eliana Stabile’s precise shot from the spot kick looked certain to find the top left corner but was spooned out by Durante who made a magnificent save to keep Italy afloat. The second half saw both the sides making several substitutional changes some of which were forced due to injured being sustained by the players on field. The final twist in the game came in the form of Italy taking the lead. Girelli who came in at the 83rd minute scored out of nowhere to give Italy the lead with 3 minutes of regular time remaining. Boattin’s hanging cross initially seemed pretty safe but was headed in by Girelli who directed her effort superbly across the goal into the top left corner. FT:- Italy 1-0 Argentina.
Italy shall next be facing Sweden on Saturday. Meanwhile Argentina will be taking on South Africa in their upcoming group stage game.