Uruguay edge Italy 1-0 to advance, bite mars game
By Andrew Dampf ,AP
June 26, 2014, 12:01 am TWN
NATAL, Brazil -- Captain Diego Godin scored in the 81st minute as Uruguay edged 10-man Italy 1-0 Tuesday to reach the second round of the World Cup, although the victory was overshadowed by a biting incident involving the South American side's star forward Luis Suarez.
Four-time champion Italy, meanwhile, is heading home after the group phase for the second time in four years.
Godin rose above a crowd of defenders to meet a corner with his left shoulder and veteran goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon had no chance.
Moments earlier, replays showed Suarez apparently bite the shoulder of Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini as the pair clashed in the Italian penalty area.
Suarez was already sanctioned with a heavy ban for biting Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic in the English Premier League in 2013 and FIFA can sanction players for biting with bans of up to two years.
Chiellini said Suarez should have been sent off and that the red card for Italy midfielder Claudio Marchisio should never have been given.
"The red for Marchisio and not sending off Suarez were ridiculous," Chiellini said. "It was absolutely clear. There's even a mark," Chiellini said of the bite.
It was only one of many ugly incidents in a highly physical "in or out" match at the Arena das Dunas.
Marchisio was shown a direct red card for putting his boot into Egidio Arevalo's knee in the 59th. Also, Mario Balotelli picked up his second yellow card in two matches for a dangerous foul during the first half, and was benched for the second period.
"(The referee) certainly didn't give us a helping hand," Buffon said. "But in the end you can't always be recriminating and putting the blame on others.
"Every now and then, it's only right that you accept what you're to blame for and when you're coming off two defeats without even scoring a goal, we clearly also have to take our share of that blame," added Buffon, who tied the record by being selected for his fifth World Cup squad.
Costa Rica was the surprise winner of Group D with seven points following a 0-0 draw with England on Tuesday. Uruguay finished second with six, while Italy and England went home with three and one point, respectively.