Italy Call-Ups for Montenegro / Ireland (World Cup 2010 Qualifiers)

FIFA World Cup 2010 Qualifiers - Italy vs. Montenegro/Ireland

The Italian call-ups for their upcoming World Cup 2010 Qualifying matches vs. Montenegro (March 28) and Montenegro (April 4) have been revealed. Italy coach Marcello Lippi submitted the list of 23 players to FIFA earlier this week, a list which as usual contains notable absentees and a few surprises.

Goalkeepers: Buffon (Juventus), Amelia (Palermo), De Sanctis (Galatasaray)
Defenders: Bocchetti (Genoa), F.Cannavaro (Real Madrid), Chiellini (Juventus), Dossena (Liverpool), Gamberini (Fiorentina), Grosso (Lyon), Motta (Roma), Zambrotta (Milan)
Midfielders: Brighi (Roma), De Rossi (Roma), Foggia (Lazio), Montolivo (Fiorentina), Palombo (Sampdoria), Pirlo (Milan)
Forwards: Di Natale (Udinese), Iaquinta (Juventus), Pazzini (Sampdoria), Pepe (Udinese), Quagliarella (Udinese), G.Rossi (Villareal)

Any surprises? A few. Normally I like to go over “those who are here” first, but let’s proceed in reverse order this time. Let’s start with the obvious, injury-related absentees (the category I like to call “those who don’t need to worry”) and there’s plenty of names to fill the list here: Legrottaglie, Bonera, Materazzi in defense, Camoranesi, Gattuso, Aquilani and Perrotta in midfield, Gilardino and Toni up front. There. Done.

Antonio Cassano, ItalyMoving onto tactical non-selections, the biggest name here is obviously Antonio Cassano. The Sampdoria forward may have been playing astronomically lately, keeping the I-am-crazy lid tight shut, but it still isn’t enough for Lippi. In all likelihood, the past antics of Talentino have put a permanent dent in his chances of making a re-appearance in Azzurro, at least for as long as Marcello’s around. And who can blame the Italian manager? Technique-wise, there’s no question Cassano could bring a undeniable quality to this team, however (and despite his behaviour has been exemplary lately, although who knows how long that will effectively last) he’s too much of a loose cannon to be kept around.

Other absentees: Del Piero (no news there, my guess is that Lippi will call him to the squad late in the pre-World Cup stages, for as long as he continues to play well), Barzagli, Panucci, Ambrosini (not Marcello-favorites), as well as Marco Di Vaio.

We finally move on to the effective call-ups, where we find three newcomers in the lot, Marco Motta, Salvatore Bocchetti, and Giampaolo Pazzini, as well as three notable returns, Matteo Brighi and Pasquale Foggia (respectively capped one and two times before).

Marco Motta, ItalyMotta has been capped many times at the U-21 level (he’s the captain of the Azzurrini), and his recent performances with Roma have brought the young lad to the next level, enough apparently to earn him a promotion to the senior team. As for Bocchetti, there is a reason Genoa is currently sitting 4th in the standings (and that is not only “Diego Milito”): the third best defence of Serie A has been counting on regular high-level performances from their young Neapolitan defender, who at age 22 gets his Giampaolo Pazzini, Italyfirst chance to make an appearance in the Azzurri senior team (after being capped 15 times at the U-21 level). Finally, need we really to talk about Pazzini‘s resurgence and transformation since his transfer from Fiorentina? The 24 year-old has been absolutely on fire in front of the net in recent months, making with Cassano one of the most feared striking partnerships of Serie A. Such a shame the two won’t get a chance to feature together in Azzurro as well.

As for Brighi and Foggia, their call-up is the reward for their excellent performances (for Roma and Lazio respectively) throughout the season, particularly Brighi who has solidly anchored himself as the reference point in the Roma midfield, alongside Daniele De Rossi.

The Azzurri will play away on Saturday March 28 against Montenegro (in Podgorica), and then host Ireland on Wednesday April 1 (in Bari).

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Posted in Azzurri, World Cup 2010 |

Related Posts:

  • Italy Call-Ups for Bulgaria / Montenegro (World Cup 2010 Qualifiers)
  • World Cup 2010 Preliminary Draw – Italy get Bulgaria, Ireland, Cyprus, Georgia, and Montenegro
  • Montenegro 0-2 Italy: Pirlo-Pazzini Give Azzurri Top of the Group (World Cup 2010 Qualifiers)
  • World Cup 2010 – UEFA Qualifiers’ Draw to Unfold Today
  • Azzurri News: Lippi Satisfied With His Squad, Quagliarella Replacing Toni for Wednesday
  • Comments are closed.