Sweden qualify as Italy miss out on FIFA World Cup

Sweden and Italy gear up for World Cup playoff clash

But an Azzurri performance in Stockholm branded "ugly and confused" leaves Italy with all to play for in tomorrow morning's second leg in Milan as they bid to avoid missing out on the World Cup Finals for the first time since 1958.

"They developed well and have good individual players".

Italy's streak of 14 consecutive World Cup appearances is snapped. I thank the lads who were with us and, although it wasn't enough, I hope that we gave them something. "That's why I keep talking about courage, about taking the initiative and go for it when we have the chance", said Sweden coach Janne Andersson.

Sweden lost first-leg goalscorer Johansson after 15 minute when his left knee buckled badly and he was stretchered off to make way for Gustav Svensson.

"We analyzed the things that went well and others that did not go so well".

This shouldn't make America feel any better, but there is a very, very petty part of me that can't help but relish watching an global titan like Italy struggle with the same kind of failure as the USMNT.

Former Manchester United midfielder Liam Miller 'battling cancer'
Some incredibly sad news began to emerge last night that former Irish worldwide Liam Miller was gravely ill, fighting cancer. Speaking at a press conference ahead of his side's World Cup playoff against Denmark, O'Neill expressed his shock.

The big news from the first leg is that Marco Verratti will miss the second contest after picking up a yellow card in Sweden.

The result will nearly certainly see the end of manager Gianpiero Ventura, while the loss marks the end of superstar goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon's time in the national team.

Italy are out of the World Cup after tonight's 0-0 draw with Sweden.

Mario Balotelli was the star of Euro 2012 but fell out of favor after Italy's woeful showing at the last World Cup, and hasn't been called up by Ventura, while Conte selected him in only one squad.

Sweden had two strong shouts for handball rejected in the first half in the San Siro, but television replays suggested that both should have been given. "The only thing that I would have would be a personal satisfaction, but in the wider scheme of things, I am irrelevant".

But why do we want Italy to qualify? Immbobile beat Olsen with another but Andreas Granqvist got back for a decisive goal-line clearance.

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