Giorgio Chiellini claims the rest did him good, although against Denmark Italy “made life complicated for ourselves.”
The Azzurri were under intense pressure in the first 15 minutes and Chiellini almost gave away a goal with a poor backpass, but they eventually emerged 3-1 winners.
“Paradoxically in about 20 seconds either side of the break we made life complicated for ourselves,” he said referring to a Danish goal and Pablo Daniel Osvaldo’s red card for lashing out an elbow.
“We had a great second half with 10 men, though in a way we were more solid and ran fewer risks in that period. We barely risked anything at the back after the opening 15 minutes. Denmark are a very physical side and can make it tough for you.”
Italy are now four points clear at the top of World Cup qualifying Group B with 10 points from four games.
“This is a very balanced group, as you can see from the other results, but now we have to do well in March and June to further extend that lead.”
Chiellini was left on the bench for Friday’s 3-1 win in Armenia and he understands Cesare Prandelli’s reasoning.
“Of course I wanted to play in Armenia, but we are a strong squad and unfortunately only 11 can start. It’s not easy to choose, but after the injury over the summer and all those games I played with Juventus, the rest was really good for me. I think everyone could see I had a different pace tonight.”
The Juve defender also assured it is not a problem that teammates Gigi Buffon and Claudio Marchisio picked up injuries while on international duty, just before Saturday’s Scudetto clash with Napoli.
“When we are here we give 100 per cent for Italy and do not think about saving ourselves for our clubs.”