Israel star Eran Zahavi – formerly of Palermo – is confident “Italy will not underestimate us” in the World Cup qualifier.
It kicks off on Monday 9in Haifa at 19.45 UK time (18.45 GMT).
“Italy are stronger, so we must show courage and try to prove what we can do,” said captain Zahavi in a Press conference.
“It’s true we could be happy with a draw. I’m sure Italy will not underestimate us, but they have an excellent squad and are determined to win.
“They are coming here looking for an ideal debut in the World Cup qualifying group and that means bringing points home.”
Zahavi has Serie A experience with Palermo from July 2011 to January 2013, scoring two goals and providing three assists in 26 competitive games.
The 29-year-old is now playing in China with Guangzhou R&F.