EURO 2012 LIVE: Spain vs. Italy

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1728: Good to see Antonio Cassano start today for Italy, too. The striker had to have heart surgery in November and there were doubts about him ever returning to football again, let alone being involved in an international match. Goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon is being put through his paces as the Italy team warms up. Midfielder Daniele De Rossi starts in the center of a three-man defense for Italy, so a makeshift defender will be up against a makeshift forward.

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1724: So, Cesc Fabregas _ a midfielder _ leads the attack for Spain as it begins the defense of the trophy against 2006 World Cup winner Italy. What does that say about coach Vicente del Bosque’s thoughts about strikers Fernando Torres, Fernando Llorente and Alvaro Negredo? And what must those three think, being overlooked for the Barcelona man?

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1719: Here are the lineups for Spain vs. Italy:

Spain: Casillas, Arbeloa, Ramos, Pique, Alba, Xabi Alonso, Busquets, Silva, Xavi, Iniesta, Fabregas.

Italy: Buffon, Chiellini, De Rossi, Bonucci, Giaccherini, Marchisio, Pirlo, Thiago Motta, Maggio, Balotelli, Cassano.

Subs:

Spain: Valdes, Reina, Raul Albiol, Javi Martin, Juanfran, Pedro, Torres, Negredo, Mata, Llorente, Santi Cazorla, Jesus Navas.

Italy: Sirigu, De Sanctis, Ogbonna, Balzaretti, Abate, Di Natale, Barzagli, Borini, Montolivo, Giovinco, Diamanti, Nocerino.

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