Despite late English pressure, Italy held on courtesy of Tuttino's brilliant strike
A stunning 30-yard strike from Italy's Alessia Tuttino consigned 10-woman England to defeat in their opening match of Group C in Euro 2009.
The midfielder smashed the winner nine minutes from time as England suffered only their second defeat in 12 games.
England lost Casey Stoney when she was sent off on 28 minutes, but soon took the lead when Fara Williams converted a penalty after Karen Carney was fouled.
Italy equalised through Patrizia Panico on 56 minutes before Tuttino's winner.
The defeat heaps extra pressure on Hope Powell's side, who have two matches remaining in the group against Russia and Sweden.
England began brightly and went close through a long-range strike from Williams and a sharp chance for Carney on 18 minutes.
But the complexion of the match turned when Stoney was red carded for pulling the shirt of Melania Gabbiadini as the striker headed towards goal.
Despite their numerical disadvantage, England took the lead seven minutes before half-time after winger Carney was cynically bundled off the ball by two players inside the box, with Williams slotting the spot-kick past Anna Picarelli.
Italy responded after the break as Panico took advantage when Katie Chapman failed to cut out a cross to level the scores.
Tuttino's strike was the catalyst for a late surge of England attacks, but neither Williams or Kelly Smith could find a way past Picarelli in goal.
England face Russia on Friday in Helsinki.
England: Brown, Stoney, White, Asante, Alex Scott, Chapman, Sue Smith, Williams, Jill Scott, Carney, Aluko. Subs: Chamberlain, Johnson, Kelly Smith, Unitt, Handley, Sanderson, Westwood, Bassett, Buet, Clarke, Bardsley.
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