Posted: Sun June 23, 2013 8:40PM; Updated: Sun June 23, 2013 8:40PM

Mario Balotelli ruled out of Confed Cup semifinal vs. Spain

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Mario Balotelli injured
Mario Balotelli suffered a muscle injury in his left leg during Italy's 4-2 loss to Brazil on Saturday.
Natacha Pisarenko/AP

FORTALEZA, Brazil (AP) -- Forward Mario Balotelli will miss Italy's semifinal vs. Spain in the Confederations Cup with a strained muscle in his left leg.

The Italian Football Federation made the announcement Sunday following tests on Balotelli. The injury occurred during Italy's 4-2 loss to Brazil on Saturday.

The federation said Balotelli would continue to be monitored in the hope he can return for Italy's next match - either the final or the third-place game.

Italy faces World Cup holder Spain on Thursday. The final and third-place games are June 30.

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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