Spain beat Bafana Bafana to maintain their 100% record at the Confederations Cup; South Africa advance after Iraq & the All Whites draw a blank

Spain 2 – South Africa 0 (Confederations Cup, June 20, 2009) After a goalless first half (highlights here), Spain had the chance to take the lead when David Villa had a 50th minute penalty but surprisingly the Valencia striker saw his spot kick saved. But Villa forgot about his disappointment minutes later, the forward collecting a ball on his chest before finding the far bottom corner. The European Champions double their advantage in the 72nd minute when Fernando Llorente turned home a scrappy free-kick to put the game to bed.

Iraq 0 – New Zealand 0 (Confederations Cup, June 20, 2009) The Iraqis started brightly with Emad Mohammed sending a header narrowly over the bar after six minutes. Younis Mahmoud then saw a shot saved four minutes later.


Sweden 1 – Italy 2 (European Under-21 Championships, June 19, 2009) The mouthwatering match-up between host nation Sweden and the Azzurrini opened with a fantastic goal from Mario Balotelli, the Inter striker collected possession just outside the top left hand side of the box, shimmied the ball onto his right peg and curled a beauty into the far corner. But Super Mario’s joy was short-lived as the striker saw a straight red in the 37th minute for a reckless and unnecessary tackle on Pontus Wernbloom. (First half highlights here.) Down to 10-men, Italy doubled their lead in the 53rd minute. Sebastian Giovinco was the architect, the Atomic Ant winning a free-kick under the corner flag before floating a ball onto the head of Robert Acquafresca who headed in number two. Ola Toivonen netted a late consolation for Sweden in the 89th minute.

Belarus 0 – Serbia 0 (European Under-21 Championships, June 19, 2009) Manchester United’s young winger Zoran Tosic continued to look like Serbia’s brightest spark to score, however neither side could take their chances as the match ended goalless.

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