Thursday June 21 2012
Balotelli in and Motta out?

Mario Balotelli is expected to return to the starting XI for the England game, but Thiago Motta is an Italian doubt.

Boss Cesare Prandelli is assessing his options ahead of Sunday evening’s Euro 2012 quarter-final tie in Kiev.

Balotelli was dropped for the win over the Republic of Ireland this week, but came off the bench to seal a 2-0 victory.

Reports today are claiming that he will replace Antonio Di Natale from the start against the English outfit.

Doubts over the presence of Thiago Motta revolve around his fitness given that the midfielder is struggling with muscle fatigue.

Should he not pass a fitness test then Prandelli will consider using Bologna’s Alessandro Diamanti, Riccardo Montolivo or Antonio Nocerino – both of Milan.

Juventus stopper Leonardo Bonucci should come into the back four in place of the injured Giorgio Chiellini.

In terms of formation, Prandelli currently favours the 4-3-1-2 ahead of the 3-5-2 he used in the 1-1 draws with Spain and Croatia.

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