NEWS
Tuesday November 23 2010
Sorrentino has Italy ambition

Chievo goalkeeper Stefano Sorrentino hopes to make Italy boss Cesare Prandelli change his mind so he calls him up in the near future.

The 31-year-old was superb last season and had thought he stood a chance of filling in for Gigi Buffon during the latter's injury lay-off.

However, Prandelli has decided to put his faith into two younger 'keepers in Bologna's Emiliano Viviano and Palermo's Salvatore Sirigu.

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BLOG ITALIA
Friday November 19 2010
Decision time for Prandelli

After the drab draw and performance against Romania, Antonio Labbate has concerns about Cesare Prandelli's shapeless Italian side

Amongst the inevitable doubts after Italy's disastrous showing at the World Cup under his predecessor, Cesare Prandelli had one certainty. Desperate to field a team which contained quality, a word he repeatedly used at his official unveiling, his idea was to build a side behind an attacking tandem of Antonio Cassano and Mario Balotelli.

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NEWS
Thursday November 18 2010
Balotelli: 'Racists were mainly stupid'

Mario Balotelli has urged everyone to fight racism and pointed out the actions of the ‘fans' in Austria was “more stupidity than anything else.”

The Italy striker was booed repeatedly during the 1-1 friendly against Romania and banners were held up that read: ‘Italy for the Italians' and ‘No to a multi-ethnic Italy.'

“I can't do anything on my own. Everyone has to do something to fight racism,” said the Manchester City star on Sky Sport Italia.

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NEWS
Thursday November 18 2010
Balzaretti delighted with debut

Federico Balzaretti is still buzzing from his Italy debut and knows he must impress with Palermo to get another chance.

“Playing last night was so satisfying. I hoped to do better, but just being there for that game was very exciting,” he told Stadionews.

The left-back was one of four debutants in the starting XI for the 1-1 draw against Romania.

“At the end of the game Cesare Prandelli complimented everyone. I am very happy to have received his call.

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NEWS
Thursday November 18 2010
Prandelli hits back at racists

Cesare Prandelli has told racist supporters they will have to get used to the new world. “My Italy will always be multi-ethnic.”

A small group of fans in the crowd for last night's 1-1 draw with Romania protested against the inclusion of Mario Balotelli and Argentine-born Cristian Ledesma.

They held up banners that read: ‘Italy is for Italians' and ‘No to a multi-ethnic Italy.'

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BLOG ITALIA
Thursday November 18 2010
Another defeat for Italy

Scott Fleming laments the racial abuse of Mario Balotelli in last night's international friendly with Romania

Last night's friendly international should have been about the new Italy. It should have been about a side that was the antithesis of Marcello Lippi's Nazionale, brimming with youth and vigour, so inexperienced that Giuseppe Rossi was the captain and most capped player.

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NEWS
Thursday November 18 2010
Ledesma shrugs off racist banner

Cristian Ledesma says he can't wait to wear the Italy jersey again and replied to the banners questioning his nationality.

The Lazio midfielder made his Azzurri debut in the 1-1 draw with Romania last night, but there were some who asked if he should've made the switch from Argentina.

“I can't wait to wear the Azzurri jersey again,” he told Sky Sport Italia.

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NEWS
Wednesday November 17 2010
Rossi to captain Italy

La Gazzetta dello Sport understands Villarreal striker Giuseppe Rossi will captain Italy against Romania this evening in a surprise move.

Italy boss Cesare Prandelli is experimenting to the extreme in Klagenfurt handing four players their debuts and giving Mario Balotelli the No 10 shirt.

Oddly enough, Rossi is the most capped player in Italy's starting line up for this evening's encounter with seven more appearances than Alberto Aquilani.

Rossi will dedicate the captain's armband to his father who sadly died in February.

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NEWS
Wednesday November 17 2010
'I dream of Balotelli-Cassano attack'

Italy boss Cesare Prandelli has revealed that he dreams of playing Mario Balotelli and Antonio Cassano together in attack.

The 53-year-old has never hidden his desire to build his side around Italy's two most exciting and temperamental players.

Unfortunately, Prandelli will not get that opportunity this evening, as Cassano was not called up following his dispute with Sampdoria.

Speaking to RAI Sport ahead of tonight's friendly, Prandelli said: "My most ambitious project was and remains that of seeing Mario and Antonio together.

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NEWS
Wednesday November 17 2010
Italy rise in FIFA ranking

Italy have risen two spots in the FIFA World Ranking to 14th place, while Egypt climb into the top 10.

The Azzurri had been languishing in 16th since the dismal 2010 World Cup campaign.

Recent Euro 2012 qualifiers have boosted their standing with a climb of two places to 14th.

Elsewhere, Egypt have climbed into the top 10, replacing Russia.

Reigning world and European champions Spain are still the leaders, followed by Holland and Brazil.

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