Thursday June 12 2014
Verratti to determine Italy shape?

The Gazzetta dello Sport speculate Italy’s formation and personnel to start against England may depend on Marco Verratti’s fitness.

The Paris Saint-Germain midfielder returned to training on Wednesday after missing the last two days with flu, but his availability for the Azzurri’s opening Group D match on Saturday remains in doubt.

The Gazzetta dello Sport indicate that his availability will determine Cesare Prandelli’s likely tactics against Roy Hodgson’s men, as well as who else may make the starting XI.

Should the 21-year-old be passed fit, it is seen that he will play alongside Andrea Pirlo in a formation similar to that seen against Luxembourg.

However, should Verratti not make the game, then a 4-1-4-1 shape may be put in place, and that this latter option would see Lorenzo Insigne preferred to Antonio Cassano, for his ability to better cover the entire wing.

Italy's training yesterday saw a 4-3-3 shape with Insigne and Ciro Immobile notably used alongside the more senior members of the team.