'Humiliated' Italy return home to face press

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The Independent Online

The Italian press pulled no punches this morning as they dissected the Azzurri's World Cup failure.

Marcello Lippi's men failed to negotiate a passage through the group phase in South Africa after losing 3-2 to Slovakia yesterday in what was a weak defence of the trophy they won four years ago in Germany.



Gazzetta dello Sport led the condemnation with a headline of: "Humiliated by Slovakia, time to go home."



They also added: "Home in shame."



Corriere dello Sport continued in a similar vein with: "Italy, what shame! Out and last in the group."



Italy's leading broadsheet Corriere della Sera carried the story on its front page under the headline: "Italy, farewell to the World Cup.



In a special World Cup link, the paper added: "Disastrous Italy, the Azzurri go home.



La Repubblica focused more on the impact the failure would have on a country obsessed by football.



"Shame and tears, a nation to be rebuilt," said its headline, before adding: "Slovakia win 3-2 in Johannesburg to knock the Azzurri out in the first round, something that has not happened since 1974.



"We now look to (new coach Cesare) Prandelli."



Turin-based La Stampa blamed Lippi for the team's poor showing.



Their headline read: "The failure of Lippi in South Africa.



"The blackest page of our footballing history."



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