PRETORIA: Brazil coach Dunga says his team can still improve despite the emphatic way they tore apart Italy to end the world champions Confederations Cup.
The samba kings devastated their arch-rivals on Sunday with three goals in an eight-minute spell with Sevilla striker Luis Fabiano bagging a brace and Liverpool defender Andrea Dossena scoring an own goal.
It was the first time Italy have conceded three goals before half-time since 1957 and with the United States recording a shock 3-0 win over Egypt in Rustenberg, Italy missed out on making the semi-finals on goal difference.
By topping Group B, Brazil avoid Spain and play South Africa on Thursday for a place in the final after the hosts finished runner-up in Group A.
The United States take on the European champions tomorrow.
“We still have a lot to improve on,” said Dunga. “We have players of great technical abilities and the more we work together the more we can grow, but we are on the right track.
“We showed against Italy that we were superior in all aspects of the game. We beat the world champions and we did it in an an efficient way.”
An apathetic Italy slumped to a shock 1-0 defeat against Egypt in their last group game and coach Marcello Lippi made four changes to try and reverse the slide.
Out went Fabio Grosso, Gennaro Gattuso, Giuseppe Rossi and Fabio Quagliarella and in came Andrea Dossena, Riccardo Montolivo, Luca Toni and Mauro Camoranesi.
But it made little difference against a Brazilian team that took full advantage of Italy’s defensive frailties.
They were dangerous from the outset with Italy fortunate not to go behind after six minutes when Ramires hit the angle between the post and the crossbar after being put through by Fabiano.
Italy were forced to get men behind the ball as the South Americans surged forward, Maicon and Kaka both having shots blocked and Robinho forcing a save from Gianluigi Buffon.
They eventually settled down but the Brazilian pressure was relentless and Daniele de Rossi almost put the ball in his own goal when he stuck out a foot to meet a Lucio shot and it deflected onto the post.
The breakthrough came eight minutes before half-time when Fabiano pounced on a scuffed shot from Maicon to drive the ball beyond Buffon’s reach.
They doubled their lead six minutes later when Robinho and Kaka combined to feed Fabiano who made no mistake from close range.
With Italy on the ropes, Brazil delivered a knockout punch two minutes later after Robinho broke down the left and delivered a cross with Dossena turning the ball into his own net under pressure. — AFP