Federico Balzaretti still can’t quite believe that Italy lost 1-0 to Uruguay on Tuesday night. “The ball just wouldn’t go in.”
The South Americans took an early lead at the Stadio Olimpico when Sebastian Fernandez struck after just three minutes.
Despite creating numerous chances to ripple the net, Cesare Prandelli’s Azzurri failed to get back on level terms.
“From out there on the field of play we felt that a draw was the very least we deserved from this game,” the Palermo left-back noted.
“We had scoring opportunities in the first and second half, so objectively in terms of the football there was little more we could do.
“There are regrets because the problem is we were unable to score, as the rest of the performance was very positive and we took the initiative at all times.
“It’s a shame, as we had plenty of chances and couldn’t get the ball in the net. Of course it is painful and disappointing, as nobody wants to lose.”
Balzaretti himself went close to making it 1-1, only to be denied by a fine save from former Lazio ‘keeper Fernando Muslera.
“I was about to catch Muslera out, but I scuffed it and he made a fantastic save. I did such a great first touch that I couldn’t do the shot too. I can’t get two things in a row right…”
Despite not being a competitive match in terms of points on offer, the referee was forced to use his yellow and red cards.
“This wasn’t much of a friendly! South Americans are very passionate, so we tried to respond blow for blow,” the former Fiorentina man added.
“Uruguay are very organised and put 10 men behind the ball, so it was particularly disappointing for us to create so many chances against them and not score.
“They are among the best in the world right now, so we ought to be proud.”