NEWS
Saturday October 8 2016
Pandev: 'Macedonia can't wait'

Genoa striker Goran Pandev explains Macedonia have been anxiously awaiting their World Cup qualifier with Italy for some time.

It kicks off in Skopje on Sunday at 19.45 UK time (18.45 GMT).

“Our people can’t wait for this game. We hadn’t played Israel yet and already they were talking about tomorrow’s match,” Pandev told La Gazzetta dello Sport.

“It will be a pretty packed stadium and that passionate atmosphere has always helped the team. We play more than anything else for honour.

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NEWS
Saturday October 8 2016
Italy overhaul in Macedonia

Italy are planning massive changes to the line-up against Macedonia, with Marco Verratti, Antonio Candreva, Ciro Immobile and Andrea Belotti.

The World Cup qualifier kicks off in Skopje on Sunday at 19.45 UK time (18.45 GMT).

For a look ahead ot the Macedonia match, read Gaby McKay's blog.

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NEWS
Saturday October 8 2016
Verratti agent: 'Italy, Juve and Napoli'

Marco Verratti “will play against Macedonia” tomorrow, said the Italy midfielder’s agent, who also discussed PSG, Napoli and Juventus.

The talent was surprisingly left out of a 1-1 draw with Spain on Thursday, though is expected to start Sunday’s World Cup qualifier in Skopje.

“Verratti respects every decision made by the Coach. He is fine and has no physical problems,” insisted agent Donato Di Campli on Radio Crc.

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NEWS
Saturday October 8 2016
Pelle' 'behaviour unacceptable'

Italy team manager Lele Oriali noted Graziano Pellè was kicked out of the squad after “unacceptable behaviour.”

The striker was substituted during Thursday’s 1-1 draw with Spain in Turin and when leaving the field refused to shake Coach Giampiero Ventura’s hand.

The tactician tried to play down the incident in his post-match comments and Pellè apologised.

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BLOG ITALIA
Saturday October 8 2016
Macedonia or bust for Azzurri

Macedonia aren’t much of a threat on paper, but Italy never make it easy against the minnows, as Gaby McKay explains.

In theory, Sunday night’s match should be a cakewalk for Italy. Macedonia haven’t won a competitive match since beating Luxembourg 3-2 in October of 2014, and the Red Lynxes have sunk to 146th in the FIFA World Rankings, their worst position since joining the organisation in 1994.

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NEWS
Friday October 7 2016
Chiellini leaves Italy camp

Multiple reports suggest Giorgio Chellini has left the Italy camp after suffering a calf injury in training.

The centre-back was forced to quit training earlier today after taking a knock, and was sent for tests by Azzurri medics ahead of the Macedonia match.

Now SportMediaset, Sky and TuttoJuve are reporting that Chiellini has left the training camp, and will return to Juventus.

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NEWS
Thursday October 6 2016
Ventura: 'Impossible no red cards!'

Giampiero Ventura felt it “impossible” that Diego Costa and Sergio Ramos weren’t sent off when Spain held Italy to a 1-1 draw.

German referee Felix Brych seemed to make many mistakes during the World Cup qualifier in Turin, especially as he had initially not given the penalty for a Ramos trip on Eder.

The foul was only highlighted by his assistant and even then Ramos did not receive a second yellow card.

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NEWS
Thursday October 6 2016
Pelle' dropped after Ventura snub?

Graziano Pellè could be dropped for the trip to Macedonia after he refused to shake Italy Coach Giampiero Ventura’s hand.

The striker, now playing in China, was visibly irritated when substituted during the 1-1 draw with Spain in Turin.

He stormed off straight to the dug-out, by-passing Ventura’s attempted hand-shake.

Italy were trailing 1-0 at the time, but got back on track with a Daniele De Rossi penalty in the World Cup qualifier.

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NEWS
Thursday October 6 2016
Belotti: 'I work well with Immobile'

Andrea Belotti hinted he’s ready to start alongside Ciro Immobile when Italy visit Macedonia on Sunday.

The Torino striker and Lazio forward made all the difference when coming off the bench in the 1-1 draw with Spain.

“When Ciro and I came on, we wanted at all costs to turn the game around. We tried to give all we had, even for only a few minutes on the field, and fortunately we were able to get an equaliser,” Belotti told Rai Sport.

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NEWS
Tuesday October 4 2016
Donnarumma 'learns from Buffon'

Gianluigi Donnarumma “wants to learn everything” from Italy teammate Gigi Buffon and promises you won’t see him with tattoos or diamond earrings.

The 17-year-old Milan shot-stopper spoke to TG1 about the upcoming World Cup qualifiers with Spain and Macedonia.

“I have a wonderful rapport with Buffon. In these first few call-ups he has given me so much. I follow his every movement in training, because I want to learn everything from him,” said Donnarumma.

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