NEWS
Sunday September 6 2015
Conte: 'Pirlo deserves respect'

Antonio Conte said Andrea Pirlo “deserves more respect” after criticism and feels Italy have the toughest Euro 2016 group.

The Azzurri won both games this week, beating Malta and Bulgaria 1-0, putting them top of Group H ahead of Norway and Croatia.

“We’re not qualified yet, so that has to be the primary focus until it is secured,” the Coach told Sky Sport Italia.

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NEWS
Sunday September 6 2015
Conte: 'Italy waste chances'

Antonio Conte said Italy had “the right effort” against Bulgaria, but can’t keep wasting chances and told off Daniele De Rossi.

The Azzurri won 1-0 thanks to a De Rossi penalty, but the Roma midfielder was later sent off for a reaction foul.

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NEWS
Sunday September 6 2015
Gila: 'Aiming for the Azzurri!'

Alberto Gilardino says he signed for Palermo with an eye to regaining the national team: 'Of course that's what I'm thinking about'.

The 33-year-old joined the Rosanero in the summer and will be playing again in the stadium where he had his Azzurri debut in September of 2004.

“When I signed for Palermo it was like having a flash-back, I thought about that,” he said, as reported by La Gazzetta dello Sport.

“The influence of this stadium gave me so much positive energy.

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NEWS
Sunday September 6 2015
Conte: 'Verratti has matured, but...'

Antonio Conte defends New York City FC's Andrea Pirlo from criticism and provides Paris Saint-Germain's Marco Verratti with some feedback on how to improve.

Ahead of tonight's game against Bulgaria, played at Palermo's Stadio Barbera at 19:45 UK time, the triple-Scudetto winner spoke with RaiSport about his two most famous midfielders.

“I'm mortified by the criticisms of Pirlo,” he said.

“Before every game they say he's irreplaceable, then if his game is a B instead of an A+, people evaluate him poorly.

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NEWS
Saturday September 5 2015
Conte: 'Line-up tomorrow'

Antonio Conte will decide his line-up against Bulgaria tomorrow and shrugged off criticism of his Italy squad.

The Azzurri beat Malta 1-0 on Thursday and will host Bulgaria in another Euro 2016 qualifier in Palermo on Sunday evening.

“I have another training session tomorrow morning to evaluate who has recovered well and who hasn’t,” said the Coach in a Press conference.

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NEWS
Saturday September 5 2015
Tavecchio: 'Conte will have offers'

Federation President Carlo Tavecchio “hopes Antonio Conte will stay until 2018, but there will be offers.”

Italy will face Bulgaria in a Euro 2016 qualifier on Sunday evening at the Stadio Barbera in Palermo.

“Palermo is a fantastic city,” Tavecchio told reporters. “We need the passionate support of these people, the fire of the south.”

The Azzurri were criticised after a slender 1-0 victory over Malta on Thursday.

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NEWS
Saturday September 5 2015
Conte keeps Italy hidden

The Italy squad arrived late in Palermo and Antonio Conte is keeping his team to face Bulgaria under wraps.

The Azzurri play at the Stadio Renzo Barbera tomorrow evening in a Euro 2016 qualifier.

They had to skip a training session open to reporters today, as their flight to Palermo was delayed by bad weather.

The squad was originally due to leave from Florence, but had to take a bus to Pisa instead.

The players had a brief run-out on the pitch, but not a full training session.

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NEWS
Saturday September 5 2015
Conte shuffles Italy tactics

There are conflicting reports over whether Italy will use 4-3-3 or 3-5-2 against Bulgaria, with Andrea Pirlo in doubt.

The Azzurri beat Malta 1-0 on Thursday evening and continue their Euro 2016 qualifying campaign at the Stadio Barbera in Palermo tomorrow night.

It had until now been widely reported that Coach Antonio Conte would return to a 3-5-2 system, dropping New York City FC midfielder Pirlo to the bench.

The veteran was sluggish and made numerous inaccurate passes during the Malta game.

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NEWS
Thursday September 3 2015
Conte: 'Win is what mattered'

Antonio Conte said Italy’s win was what mattered against Malta, but don’t expect any game to be easy.

Graziano Pelle got the only goal in Florence, a 1-0 result putting the Azzurri top of Euro 2016 qualifying Group H.

“The only thing that mattered was to win and unfortunately when you don’t make the most of all the chances created, the result remains in the balance,” the Coach told Rai Sport.

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NEWS
Thursday September 3 2015
Italy third striker up for grabs

With Graziano Pelle and Antonio Candreva expected to start in Italy's 4-3-3 formation, the third striker position is disputed.

The Azzurri play Malta tonight at 19:45 UK time at the Stadio Artemio Franchi, and Coach Antonio Conte's surprise departure from the 3-5-2 is prompting speculation.

The consent among Italian publications appears to be that Pelle and Candreva will both be given a starting shirt tonight.

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