NEWS
Sunday October 9 2016
Ventura: 'Believe Belotti and Immobile'

Italy Coach Giampiero Ventura urged Graziano Pellè to “reflect” on his behaviour, discussing Andrea Belotti, Ciro Immobile and Marco Verratti.

The Azzurri visit Macedonia in a World Cup qualifier this evening, follow the action on our LIVEBLOG.

There are massive changes to the line-up after a 1-1 draw with Spain, including the removal of Pellè after his tantrum following a substitution.

“Pellè represents the Italy shirt and therefore has to respect me, the team, the fans and above all not – and this is the most serious thing – to blemish the image of the Nazionale that was created before and during Euro 2016.

“He will have time to make some reflections on his behaviour and that will be good for him. As we’ve always said, there are no closed doors or preclusions to anyone, but it’s good that he takes time out to reflect.”

Was it also a signal to Mario Balotelli to behave himself?

“Why do you always ask these things? It was a signal to everybody.”

This evening Belotti and Immobile start in attack, both players whose careers were truly launched by Ventura at Torino.

“I signed Belotti and we worked very hard on him, as we did on Immobile. It’s obvious if there’s someone absolutely convinced of their talent, then it’s me.

“At the same time, I don’t want to put too much responsibility on their shoulders. I saw one article urging me to start young players and another saying that Alessio Romagnoli against Spain was a crazy gamble.”

Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Verratti also starts, as Ventura claimed he was not fit enough to feature against Spain.

“Verratti just needs to be himself and if he does that, he will be a founding block of the future of this Nazionale.”

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