Saturday, 8 August 2009

[Azzurri] Lippi freshens up Italy

Genoa defender Domenico Criscito and Juventus midfielder Claudio Marchisio have been called up to the Italy squad for the first time for next week's friendly against Switzerland.

Domenico Criscito & Claudio MarchisioCoach Marcello Lippi has also included the uncapped Salvatore Bocchetti again and the Genoa defender could make his debut in Basle on Wednesday night.

There are few surprises in the 20-man squad despite a dismal FIFA Confederations Cup showing in South Africa this summer.

Udinese playmaker Gaetano D'Agostino, Cagliari goalkeeper Federico Marchetti and Inter defender Davide Santon are back in the fold after making their international debuts in a 3-0 friendly win over Northern Ireland in June.

There was still no place for Sampdoria star Antonio Cassano, while Andrea Dossena, Gennaro Gattuso, Riccardo Montolivo and Luca Toni were all dropped.

Antonio Di Natale returns after missing the end of last season with a knee injury but both Daniele De Rossi and Giampaolo Pazzini have been rested as they will be suspended for the next qualifying matches.

Eight of the 2006 World Cup-winning side are in the squad, including captain Fabio Cannavaro, who will break Paolo Maldini's record of 126 appearances if he features to become the Azzurri's all-time most capped player.

The squad will gather for training at the FIGC's Technical Centre in Coverciano on Monday before travelling to Switzerland on Tuesday afternoon.

Italy will be back in competitive action next month, when they take on Georgia in Tbilisi on September 5 and host Bulgaria in Turin four days later.

Lippi's men lead qualifying Group 8 with 14 points from six matches, one point more than the Republic of Ireland with a game in hand.

Italy squad
Goalkeepers: Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus), Federico Marchetti (Cagliari).
Defenders: Salvatore Bocchetti (Genoa), Fabio Cannavaro (Juventus), Giorgio Chiellini (Juventus), Domenico Criscito (Genoa), Fabio Grosso (Lyon), Davide Santon (Inter), Gianluca Zambrotta (AC Milan).
Midfielders: Mauro Camoranesi (Juventus), Gaetano D'Agostino (Udinese), Claudio Marchisio (Juventus), Angelo Palombo (Sampdoria), Simone Pepe (Udinese), Andrea Pirlo (AC Milan).
Forwards: Antonio Di Natale (Udinese), Alberto Gilardino (Fiorentina), Vincenzo Iaquinta (Juventus), Fabio Quagliarella (Napoli), Giuseppe Rossi (Villarreal).

Source: FIGC

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