Italy coach Marcello Lippi is looking forward to a rare opportunity of working with his squad for a concentrated period of three weeks during the FIFA Confederations Cup.
"We usually only get the players for a short period of time so we will look to use this period constructively," Lippi told a news conference after Italy's first training session on South African soil.
"The last time I had them together for a long period we didn't do too badly," he said in a reference to the Azzurri's World Cup success in Germany in 2006.
"We will be trying to mix up a few youngsters with the experienced players we have. This is how you blend a side for the World Cup next year."
Italy are competing in the eight-team Confederations Cup for the first time as World champions and have been drawn with Brazil, Egypt and the United States in Group B.
Lippi's side start the tournament next Monday with a match against the United States of America in Pretoria but before that have a friendly against New Zealand on Wednesday and a training game with a local side on Friday.
"Our immediate objective is to get some form going. I'll be using the players who are in good physical condition for the match against New Zealand," Lippi added.
The Confederations Cup, a test event for next year's World Cup, begins on Sunday and runs until June 28.
[FIFA Confederations Cup 2009]