Friday, 26 February 2010

[U21] Squad named for Hungary showdown

Italy Under-21 coach Pierluigi Casiraghi has named Bologna midfielder Federico Casarini in his squad for next week's crucial UEFA European Under-21 Championship qualifier against Hungary.

Federico CasariniItaly are struggling in their qualifying campaign, with earlier defeats to Group 3 leaders Wales and second-placed Hungary leaving the five-time European champions at risk of missing out on the final tournament in Denmark next summer.

The Azzurrini picked up an important win against Luxembourg last time out but still sit six points behind the Welsh, albeit having played a game less, and two adrift of Hungary, having played a game more.

Any win against Hungary at Rieti's Stadio Centro d'Italia next Wednesday is the least required to keep alive hopes of qualification, but Casiraghi's men will look to better the Hungarians' 2-0 win in Gyor last November. September's final double-header sees an away trip to Bosnia-Herzegovina on 3 September and Wales at home four days later.

Under-pressure Casiraghi named a host of new faces for a get-together training camp last week, but only Sassuolo defender Gianluigi Bianco has received an official call-up, with Casarini the only other new face in the 20-man squad.

The injured Davide Santon, Alberto Paloschi, Andrea Ranocchia and Vincenzo Fiorillo all miss out.

The squad will gather for training on Sunday evening at the Borghesiana sports centre in Rome before the short journey to Rieti on Tuesday.

Italy Under-21 squad
Vito Mannone (Arsenal), Mattia Perin (Genoa).
Defenders: Gabriele Angella (Empoli), Lorenzo Ariaudo (Cagliari), Guiseppe Bellusci (Catania), Gianluigi Bianco (Sassuolo), Michele Cremonesi (Cremonese), Lorenzo De Silvestri (Fiorentina), Obinze Angelo Ogbonna (Torino).
Midfielders: Francesco Bolzoni (Frosinone), Federico Casarini (Bologna), Davide Di Gennaro (Livorno), Luca Marrone (Juventus), Mattia Mustacchio (Ancona), Andrea Poli (Sampdoria), Ezequiel Matias Schelotto (Cesena).
Forwards: Mario Balotelli (Inter), Fabio Borini (Chelsea), Guido Marilungo (Lecce), Stefano Okaka Chuka (Fulham).

Source: FIGC

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