Saturday June 7 2014
‘Azzurri have two stars’

Goalkeeper Gigi Buffon and midfielder Andrea Pirlo are Italy’s two star players, according to defender Giorgio Chiellini.

The Juventus man was speaking at a Press conference today, held at the Azzurri’s World Cup base near Rio de Janeiro.

As well as praising his two club teammates, the 29-year-old stressed the need for Cesare Prandelli’s side to demonstrate a team ethic during their campaign in Brazil.

He also stated that a winning mentality has always been ingrained into the Azzurri, just as it is at Juve.

“This mentality has always been part of the national team,” Chiellini said. “At the moment we have two star players, Buffon and Pirlo.

“We other 21 players just have to put ourselves at the team’s disposal. The important thing is for us to give our all for the team.

“In modern football, you can’t win with individuals. Messi still hasn’t won with Argentina, neither has Ronaldo with Portugal. Imagine if one of us could do it!”

Chiellini also admitted that some of the Azzurri squad, himself included, are still feeling a little jaded after the demands of a long club season.

“I’m feeling quite good, but during the first week I had to recover from a blow to my back that I took at Roma in the League.

“There can always be a few aches and pains after a long season, but we are all recovering.

“The last year has been demanding but not just for us. Everyone has their own targets, I think it’s better to have arrived having won than having failed.

“When you approach a World Cup you can’t have feelings of regret. There shouldn’t be any other problems other than worrying about whether you will start.”

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