Mexico coach Jose Manuel de la Torre has claimed that his side "controlled" its clash with Italy despite a 2-1 Confederations Cup loss to the Azzurri.
A late goal from Mario Balotelli consigned the 1999 winner to defeat and 'Chepo' was keen to pay his compliments to the Euro 2012 runner-up.
"We faced a great team with very good players. We knew we had to contain them and play directly through the midfield," he told reporters. "We had a lot of moves when we were in good positions. I believe we could have had better luck. Of course nobody likes to lose.
"We hated losing the game like this, so near the end and after we controlled the game."
The former Guadalajara coach has come under intense pressure in recent weeks due to El Tri's poor form in World Cup qualifying, but he was quick to defend his tactics.
"If we hadn't been defensive, we would never have made it to the other box," he said.
Finally, De la Torre voiced his delight at having coached at the Maracana stadium.
"It’s a mythical stadium with a lot of background a lot of history. Everyone who has played football would want to play here so it’s been extraordinary to play against Italy here."
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- Mario Balotelli