SPANISH SPORTS NEWSPAPER Marca has set the tone for tonight’s final round of Group C matches by reminding worried Italian fans of the bad blood that exists between the two countries.
Cesare Prandelli’s men need a win against Ireland in Poznan tonight to have any chance of progressing to the Euro 2012 quarter-finals.
But the Azzurri could be packing their bags regardless if the other game between Spain and Croatia finishes in a “mutually acceptable” 2-2 draw which would see both sides progress at the Italians’ expense.
This morning’s front page splash in Marca screams “Don’t worry Italy, we’re not resentful” alongside a photo of a bloodied Luis Enrique from the 1994 World Cup quarter-final between the sides.
A late Roberto Baggio goal gave Italy a 2-1 win but Spain were denied a stoppage time penalty when Enrique was elbowed in the face by Mauro Tassotti, an incident which broke the Spaniard’s nose and subsequently earned Tassotti an eight-game ban.
Tonight’s not the night for revenge, though. “Spain, as always, will win,” Marca promises. “There is no question of a 2-2 pact.”
How very reassuring.