Ignazio Abate believes Italy’s Group D rivals England could be the dark horses of this summer’s World Cup.
The Azzurri face the Three Lions next Saturday in what is both teams’ opening match of the tournament in Brazil.
Speaking at a Press conference today, the Milan defender also stressed the need for Cesare Prandelli’s team to remain humble and not get carried away with their success at Euro 2012.
“England have changed a lot, they have created a good mix and they could be the revelation of this World Cup,” Abate told reporters.
“It will be a very difficult match, but I am convinced we will arrive in the best physical and mental condition.
“I think we need to erase what has been done previously and start again with great humility.
“At the Euros we started with a lot of scepticism, no one bet a Euro on us, but then we got to the final thanks to our desire to surprise.
“That should be the task in the World Cup too. We can’t think we are a great team who can play within itself or wait for an individual to come up with the goods.
“As long as we don’t lose our humility and willingness to make sacrifices, we can cause anyone problems.”