Riccardo Montolivo was tested as trequartista behind Mario Balotelli and Sebastian Giovinco today as Italy prepare to face Armenia.
The Azzurri continue their World Cup qualifying campaign in Armenia on Friday evening, then welcome Denmark next Tuesday.
In today’s training session, Coach Prandelli tested out a 4-3-1-2 system with Montolivo as trequartista behind Balotelli and Giovinco.
Surprisingly, returning Domenico Criscito was chosen at left-back rather than Giorgio Chiellini, while Christian Maggio keeps the right-back role despite poor performances in that position recently.
Fresh from being dropped by Roma, Daniele De Rossi is set to start in midfield with Andrea Pirlo and Claudio Marchisio.
However, towards the end of the game between ranks, Prandelli switched to a 4-3-3 with Giovinco, Balotelli and Pablo Daniel Osvaldo in attack.
The Azzurri fly out from Pisa on Wednesday afternoon.
Italy probable XI: Buffon; Maggio, Barzagli, Bonucci, Criscito; De Rossi, Pirlo, Marchisio; Montolivo; Giovinco, Balotelli