Bad Blood

This is Marca's front page today - 'Don't worry Italy, we're not resentful'

Time to start backing a 2-2 draw between Spain and Croatia tonight then.

SPANISH SPORTS NEWSPAPER Marca has set the tone for tonight’s final round of Group C matches by reminding worried Italian fans of the bad blood that exists between the two countries.

Cesare Prandelli’s men need a win against Ireland in Poznan tonight to have any chance of progressing to the Euro 2012 quarter-finals.

But the Azzurri could be packing their bags regardless if the other game between Spain and Croatia finishes in a “mutually acceptable” 2-2 draw which would see both sides progress at the Italians’ expense.

This morning’s front page splash in Marca screams “Don’t worry Italy, we’re not resentful” alongside a photo of a bloodied Luis Enrique from the 1994 World Cup quarter-final between the sides.

A late Roberto Baggio goal gave Italy a 2-1 win but Spain were denied a stoppage time penalty when Enrique was elbowed in the face by Mauro Tassotti, an incident which broke the Spaniard’s nose and subsequently earned Tassotti an eight-game ban.

Tonight’s not the night for revenge, though. “Spain, as always, will win,” Marca promises. “There is no question of a 2-2 pact.”

How very reassuring.

In pictures: Irish fans gear up for Italy game in Poznan

On Tour: taking a break from the mayhem far from the madding crowd

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