Sunday May 24 2015
'Di Natale future down to him'

Coach Andrea Stramaccioni won't field Antonio Di Natale from the start, but hopes he'll stay with Udinese.

The Zebrette are up against Sassuolo today in a game that will be largely inconsequential, but could allow either team to climb a few spots in the standings ahead of season's end.

“We're coming from a positive game, one that represented a good comeback after the worrying decline we showed against Sampdoria,” he said, in reference to the good play shown by his team in their 2-1 loss to Roma.

“Tomorrow we want to repeat that, and we're united in our drive to do well. We want to close the last game in front of our tifosi with a victory.”

The 39-year-old's options are limited as Thomas Heurtaux is suspended and Maurizio Domizzi's condition could keep him from the pitch.

“Tomorrow I'll be fielding [Igor] Bubnjic. He's in good shape and he trained very well.

“Our objective is to gather as many points as possible from here until the end.

“[Antonio] Di Natale is doing well and this season will forever be etched in the history of Udinese and Italian football.

“He played 33 games. His data and his stats from this season are substantial, even though tomorrow I'll be bringing in the attacking partnership that played against Roma [Cyril Thereau and Stipe Perica] .

“The captain will be ready to lend us a hand once the ball is rolling.

“As for his future, I'd hate to repeat myself. He's an important player and even the President had some good words for him.

“The respect that he enjoys from the Coach, the club and the supporters is immense, and the final decision will come down to him.

“I hope he stays with us for another year, but he'll be the one letting us know.

“Our surprise of the season was [Orestis] Karnezis, because he emerged from a year in which he never played as a protagonist.

“The club always considered the player an important prospect. We took care of Simone Scuffet, who represents our future, and developed the value of Orestis.

“The club deserves credit for having unearthed yet another important player.”

Udinese squad against Sassuolo: Karnezis, Meret, Scuffet, Bubnjic, Danilo, Gabriel Silva, Neuton, Pasquale, Piris, Wague, Widmer, Allan, Badu, Bruno Fernandes, Guilherme, Kone, Pinzi, Aguirre, Di Natale, Geijo, Perica, Thereau.

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