Friday, 25 May 2007

Casiraghi starts new U-21 era

Italian Under-21 boss Pierluigi Casiraghi has named his squad for their opening Euro 2009 qualifier with Albania.

The youngsters will begin their campaign in Pontedera on June 1 in a group which also consists of Croatia, Greece, Azerbaijan and the Faroe Islands.

The 2009 Finals will be hosted by Sweden, who qualify automatically, while the 10 group winners and four best second-placed sides will qualify for the play-offs set for October 2008.

Casiraghi therefore has to start a new cycle with players born after January 1, 1986 and will meet the squad on Tuesday for a three-day training camp.

Parma and Juventus are the most represented clubs with three players each, followed by Treviso with two.

The Azzurrini have also qualified for the final phase of this year’s tournament, which will take place from June 10 to June 23 in the Netherlands. Casiraghi has named a preliminary squad of 30 players, which will be cut to 23 by May 30. Italy play their first match on June 11 against Serbia and will then play England and the Czech Republic on June 14 and 17.

for Albania:
Goalkeepers: Consigli (Sambenedettese), Sirigu (Palermo).
Defenders: Belmonte (Bari), Bocchetti (Frosinone), Criscito (Genoa), Marzoratti (Empoli), Motta (Udinese), Rickler (Chievo), M. Rossi (Modena).
Midfielders: Cigarini (Parma), Candreva (Ternana), De Ceglie (Juventus), De Martino (Udinese), Dessena (Parma), Marchisio (Juventus), Paonessa (Vicenza), Russotto (Treviso).
Forwards: Acquafresca (Treviso), Giovinco (Juventus), Lupoli (Derby County), G. Rossi (Parma).

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