(Photo: Reuters/Miro Kuzmanovic)
Spain vs Italy takes place in the Confederations Cup 2013 soccer tournament on Thursday, in a semi-final that should have football fans across the world excited. The game will be a reply of the Euro 2012 final, in which Spain on 4-0, but expect Italy to come out for revenge today, with a spot in the Confederations Cup Final at stake. The game kicks off at 3 p.m. ET and can be watched online through free live stream (details below).
Spain will be favorites coming into the game, although Italy will be wanting revenge for the loss in 2012.
In team news, Spain will need to assess Roberto Soldado and Cesc Fabregas to see if they will be available just before game time. Both players suffered injuries in the match against Nigeria, and if they are out they will likely be replaced by Fernando Torres and David Silva.
Meanwhile for Italy, striker Mario Balotelli is out and will miss the rest of the tournament with a thigh injury. That means that Alberto Gilardino is expected to be drafted into the team to replace him.
Also Ignazio Abate is out, but in some good news Andrea Pirlo should recover from a calf strain and Daniele De Rossi makes a comeback following his suspension.
Many are expecting Italy, usually famed for being tight in defense, to switch things up at the back. They have conceded eight goals in their last three games which is wholly uncharacteristic of them. Some analysts have touted that they could revert to a 3-5-2 formation to counter the attacking threat from Spain's dangerous midfield.
Spain coach Vicente Del Bosque is under no illusions about how the Italians will treat this game. The Italians are a compassionate and emotional bunch, and Vicente Del Bosque has stated that he knows Italy will want revenge for the 2012 Euro final loss.
However, on current form it could be that Spain will continue to pile on the pain for Italy.
Spain vs Italy in the Confederations Cup 2013 semi-final will kick off at 3 p.m. ET and can be watched online through free live stream by clicking here.