Home Sports BRAZIL 2014: BALOTELLI’S HEADER SINKS ENGLAND, COSTA RICA SHOCKS URUGUAY

BRAZIL 2014: BALOTELLI’S HEADER SINKS ENGLAND, COSTA RICA SHOCKS URUGUAY

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  • Costa Rica stuns Uruguay 3-1 * Colombia too strong for Greece

England’s World Cup campaign started in defeat as Mario Balotelli’s header gave Group D rivals Italy a win in Manaus.

Claudio Marchisio’s low 25-yard shot opened the scoring but, less than two minutes later, Daniel Sturridge levelled from Wayne Rooney’s cross.

Phil Jagielka headed Balotelli’s lob off the line but the AC Milan striker’s header restored Italy’s lead.

Rooney spurned a good chance as he dragged a shot wide before Andrea Pirlo’s late free-kick hit the bar.

Costa Rica is top of Group D after a surprise 3-1 win over Uruguay, England’s next opponents, earlier on Saturday.

Costa Rica scored two goals in three minutes on the way to a shock Group D victory over an unconvincing Uruguay.

Edinson Cavani slotted in a first-half penalty to put Uruguay in front after Junior Diaz fouled Diego Lugano.

But, after the break, Joel Campbell lashed in a left-foot leveller and Oscar Duarte guided in a low header to give Costa Rica the lead.

Marcos Urena angled in a third for the Ticos before Uruguay’s Maxi Pereira was sent-off for a rash foul on Campbell.

And the first game of the day, Pablo Armero, Teofilo Gutierrez and James Rodriguez gave Colombia a winning World Cup start against Greece.

Napoli defender Armero, loaned to West Ham last season, rolled in Juan Cuadrado’s fifth-minute cut-back.

Gutierrez, leading Colombia’s attack in the absence of the injured Radamel Falcao, touched in from a James Rodriguez corner after the break, reports the BBC.

Theofanis Gekas headed Greece’s best chance against the bar, before Rodriguez steered in a late third.

WORLD CUP 2014 RESULTS

Colombia 3 – 0 Greece

Uruguay 1 – 3 Costa Rica

England 1 – 2 Italy

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