England put in a performance in Brazil that many at home would have deemed credible - but the result did not follow and now the pressure is on following the 2-1 defeat.
The young talent that is Raheem Sterling, Danny Welbeck and Daniel Sturridge always seemed a threat to the Italian defence, but this was also a reason for the subsequent downfall.
The quality of Andrea Pirlo cannot be under estimated and once again he was England's nemesis. He was able to run the game, always in control of possession, which allowed his defence time to recover their positions and offensively created space in which he could later pick out his forwards.
This also meant that a lot of attention turned towards Pirlo meaning there was a lot of space, especially on the right hand side which Italy utilised through Mario Balotelli's headed goal and was never really rectified by Roy Hodgson's men.
For all of the quality on the ball, defensively there was an opportunity missed from the perspective of England. Pirlo never attempts to win back the ball and therefore this creates space that should have been used. This is a part of his game too, and there should have been more consideration about this before the game with the attacking players isolating themselves on him going forward, knowing that their movement would not be followed.
The young players of England created chances, but there was never enough men in the box 'busting a gut' to get themselves a goal. This could have been because of the fear of not wanting to lose the game and therefore keeping positions or because England did not have that killer instinct. There was also too many times in which the ball was lost too quickly due to being direct too often - dribbling with the ball when the game needed slowing down.
Although the referee should not be blamed for the result, England had a legitimate claim for a penalty from a challenge on Steven Gerrard. Although the ball has gone, the challenge was late and clumsy. Referees give free-kicks for this type of tackle, but for some reason feel it different in the box.
There was also a claim for Italy for Glen Johnson's handball, and as he leans into the ball there is always the threat of it being given. But, because his hand was by his side it does not seem intentional.
There is still hope for England and a good chance to progress, but Hodgson has to find the catalyst for results rather than performances now because that is all that matters for England to progress. They meet Uruguay next on Thursday, with both teams needing a result to realistically remain in the competition.
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