NEWS
Sunday February 6 2011
Thiago Motta, Giovinco, Matri for Italy

Cesare Prandelli has named his squad for the Germany friendly, including newcomers Sebastian Giovinco, Alessandro Matri and Thiago Motta.

Italy travel to Dortmund for the international test on Wednesday and the Coach is taking the opportunity to perform a few experiments.

Thiago Motta becomes the latest of the ‘Oriundi' – players of South American origin – to earn an Italy call in recent years.

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NEWS
Saturday February 5 2011
Report: Motta given Italy clearance

It's reported FIFA have given the all-clear for Inter midfielder Thiago Motta to play for Italy next week.

The Brazilian has long been admired by Azzurri boss Cesare Prandelli and should receive his first call-up for the international friendly against Germany.

On Thursday FIGC President Giancarlo Abete confirmed he had lodged the paperwork to have Thiago Motta ready for this match on February 9.

According to the latest reports, FIFA have given the all-clear for the cap.

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NEWS
Friday February 4 2011
Germany squad for Italy friendly

Michael Ballack has not been included in the Germany squad for their friendly against Italy, but there are plenty of other stars.

Joachim Löw has called 22 players for the international test in Empoli on Wednesday February 9.

Ballack is not included, as the 34-year-old is still recovering from a long-term injury.

Cesare Prandelli will name his Italy squad for this match over the weekend.

Goalkeepers: Rene Adler, Manuel Neuer

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NEWS
Thursday February 3 2011
FIFA to rule on Motta eligibility

FIFA are to judge whether Inter midfielder Thiago Motta can in fact play for Italy.

The 28-year-old Brazilian recently spoke with Cesare Prandelli to express his desire to wear Azzurro.

Motta has an Italian passport and a call up for this month's friendly with Germany looked on the cards.

However, there is a problem in that he played two matches for a sort of Under-23 Brazil side at the Gold Cup in 2003.

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NEWS
Wednesday February 2 2011
Buffon to make Italy 'debut'

Juventus goalkeeper Gigi Buffon has likened his return to international duty to making his debut for Italy all over again.

The veteran shot stopper was out for seven months after suffering a back injury at the World Cup in South Africa last summer.

He returned to action last month and has been called up to play in a friendly against Germany.

"I've been through some tough and difficult months," Buffon said. "The back surgery, the physiotherapy and the varied training sessions…

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NEWS
Wednesday February 2 2011
Italy: FIFA World Ranking jump

Italy have climbed up the FIFA World Ranking to 13th place, while Alberto Zaccheroni's Japan soar.

The Azzurri had dropped to 14th in the wake of the dismal 2010 World Cup campaign.

Results over the last few months have seen them climb back one spot to 13th under Cesare Prandelli's reign.

The top places are unchanged with Spain the leaders, then Holland, Germany and Brazil.

The biggest change is from Japan, who won the Asian Cup for the fourth time last week.

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NEWS
Monday January 31 2011
Motta: 'I've spoken to Prandelli'

Inter midfielder Thiago Motta claims he has spoken to Italy boss Cesare Prandelli about playing for La Nazionale.

The 28-year-old Brazilian has Italian citizenship and is eligible for a call up as an oriundo.

"I have spoken with Prandelli and it made be happy," Motta said.

"I don't know if I will be called up but if it happens I will be very happy.

"I've had many joys in football and this would be another one.

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NEWS
Thursday January 27 2011
Buffon and Cassano back for Italy

Cesare Prandelli has revealed his plans to call up Gigi Buffon and Antonio Cassano for Italy's next friendly match.

The Azzurri are due to face off against Germany on February 9 and Prandelli is currently thinking over his squad.

Buffon has never once been available to Prandelli since he took charge of the World Cup on account of a seven-month injury lay off following major back surgery.

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NEWS
Thursday January 27 2011
Venue for Slovenia-Italy named

Italy's Euro 2012 qualifier against Slovenia will be played at the Stozice Stadium on March 25.

The Slovenian FA have formally announced the venue for this Group C fixture.

It will be hosted by the city of Ljubljana and their Stozice Stadium on March 25.

As preparation for that clash, Italy will play a friendly against Germany in Dortmund on February 9.

The Azzurri are currently top of Group C with 10 points from four games, followed by Slovenia on seven.

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NEWS
Wednesday January 26 2011
Prandelli laments dearth of talent

Cesare Prandelli has once again lamented the lack of young talent coming through the ranks in Italy.

The Azzurri's catastrophic exit from the World Cup last summer prompted a reshuffle within the FIGC.

Arrigo Sacchi, Roberto Baggio and Gianni Rivera have since been appointed to improve the game at grassroots level.

"Only eight per cent of youngsters in our academies make it to the first team while years ago the figure was 25 per cent.

"Many teams prefer to go looking abroad."

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