Italy coach Giovanni Trapattoni admitted that his side struggled during their opening 0-0 draw with Denmark at the Euro 2004 football championship on Monday.
"Finally the harsh reality of Euro 2004 has sunk in," Trapattoni told Italian television. "We really didn't read the game well at all in the first half. Things improved in the second but we missed our chances.
"We were too static, especially in the latter stages of the match when we started to fall off physically."
Trapattoni refused to be drawn on Italy's chances in the tournament.
"Let's see what the other two teams in our group do tonight," he said, referring to the later match between Sweden and Bulgaria.
The match was dominated by goalkeepers. Denmark's Thomas Sorensen and Gianluigi Buffon of Italy both made a series of excellent saves to prevent either side from breaking the deadlock of an uninspiring Group C encounter.
Sorensen's best moment came just before the interval when he saved two shots in quick succession from Alessandro del Piero and Francesco Totti.
Buffon also made a great save 15 minutes from time to stop Jon Dahl Tomasson firing the winner.
Sweden and Bulgaria, who play later on Monday in Lisbon, are also in Group C.