NATAL: Cesare Prandelli resigned as manager and Giancarlo Abete quit as president of the federation after Italy’s World Cup first round by Uruguay in Natal.

A 1-0 defeat was the outcome from a match which went from bad to worse for the Azzurri.

First Mario Balotelli collected a second yellow card of the finals and was substituted to avert a possible further offence and a red card then Claudio Marchisio was sent off for stamping on Egidio Arevalo.

The match, which saw Uruguay qualify for the second round behind Costa Rica from Group D, ended in angry recriminations over an accusation that Luis Suarez had bitten Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini.

Prandelli, who had guided Italy to runners-up spot at |Euro 2012, said: “When a technical project fails then it is right to take the responsibility.”

He said his decision was “irrevocable” and then indicated, for the first time, his distress over some of the criticism hurled at him.


Prandelli said: “There had been a willingness for us to move forward and to continue this project which has only camouflaged, over the last four years, the problems of Italian football.”

He had signed a contract extension only in May which would have taken him up to Euro 2016.

Despite losing to Costa Rica in their second game, the Italians needed only one point to progress to the last 16 thanks to an opening Group D 2-1 victory over England.

But Diego Godin’s late header, after Luis Suarez had escaped punishment for an apparent bite on Italy defender Girorgio Chiellini, sent Uruguay through and consigned Prandelli’s men to defeat and an early exit.

Abete said: “I would like to announce my resignation. I do hope that at the forthcoming meeting of the board they can persuade Cesare to reconsider his position.”