Thursday August 22 2013
‘Bardi could make World Cup squad’

Livorno youngster Francesco Bardi has the potential to be named in Italy’s World Cup squad next summer, says Giovanni Galli.

The latter, a former international goalkeeper who played for the likes of Milan and Fiorentina, is a fan of the Under-21 ‘keeper.

“I have a soft spot for Bardi,” the 55-year-old told the Gazzetta dello Sport. “Inter have made the right decision in loaning him out again.

“He can continue to mature at Livorno.

“Bardi has real talent,” Galli added. “If he explodes this season then he could catch the train to the World Cup in Brazil.

“He could be the heir to Gigi Buffon.”

Bardi is a product of the Livorno youth system who was snapped up by Inter in the summer of 2011. He was instantly loaned back to the Amaranto, while he spent last term at Novara.

The youngster was the Azzurrini’s first-choice at the recent U-21 European Championship where Italy lost to Spain in the Final.

Lazio’s Federico Marchetti and Salvatore Sirigu of Paris Saint-Germain are the current back-up ‘keepers to Juventus’ Buffon for Cesare Prandelli.