Monday March 19 2018
Di Biagio demands intense Italy

Luigi Di Biagio wants Italy to ‘occupy the opposing half of the pitch, regardless of who we’re playing’ and believes Marco Verratti and Jorginho can coexist.

“Unfortunately, the past can’t be changed, we’re out of the World Cup and we have to start over,” he said at a Press conference.

“We’re not on par with the best teams in the world but nowhere near among the worst.

“We can rebuild the team and start over with the players I saw in the youth sector. Many of them are starters for big teams, like Candreva and Gagliardini.

“Insigne is a guarantee, Belotti is coming back and there’s Chiesa, who’s ready to establish himself.

“Cutrone? He convinced me with his performances and enthusiasm. He’s been with us from the Under-15s.

“All the players who are here, young and old, I need them to play. I won’t call up a young person just to be praised by the Press if I already know that I won’t play them.

“My future? I know that I’m playing for something. I’ll try to make it difficult for those who are choosing the next CT, but that’s not my priority.

“Now we have problems to deal with. These two friendlies will be important because none of us want to lose, but it must be a consequence of how we’ll play.

“We want to impose our game and occupy the opposing half of the pitch, regardless of who we’re playing.

“Verratti? For me, Marco has everything to become a very important player. Perhaps he’s been judged too harshly, but he can do more. Everyone expects more.

“We ask him to make a leap in quality. He’s one of the few in this group who have been playing in the Champions League for years.

“His role? He can play anywhere in the middle and, for me, can play with Jorginho.”

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