MILAN - Brazil-born Inter Milan midfielder
Thiago Motta was included in Italy's squad for the first time on
Sunday for this week's friendly against Germany, the latest
naturalised player to be given a chance by Cesare Prandelli.
The coach had previously called up Brazil-born striker
Amauri and Argentina-born midfielder Cristian Ledesma and
although neither feature in this squad, it has not put Prandelli
off causing a new stir among fiercely patriotic Italian pundits.
Ex-Barcelona midfielder Thiago Motta played for Brazil in
the 2003 CONCACAF Gold Cup when an Under-23 team were invited.
However, this has been deemed not to count as full
international level so he has been able to be called up by Italy
thanks to an Italian grandfather giving him dual nationality.
An Italian federation statement said the 28-year-old's
callup was still "subject to formal authorisation by FIFA".
On-loan Juventus forward Alessandro Matri, who scored two
goals against parent club Cagliari in Saturday's 3-1 win and
in-form Parma winger Sebastian Giovinco, on-loan from Juve, also
received first call-ups for Wednesday's game in Dortmund.
Goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon is back for the first time since
coming off in Italy's first game at the World Cup and having
back surgery but others like striker Mario Balotelli are out
AC Milan forward Antonio Cassano has also returned to the
squad after missing November's 1-1 friendly draw with Romania
after being dropped by former club Sampdoria in an internal row.
Italy, who top Euro 2012 Group C and next visit Slovenia in
a qualifier on March 25, met Germany in Dortmund for the 2006
World Cup semi-final before going on to win the trophy.
Goalkeepers: Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus), Salvatore Sirigu
(Palermo), Emiliano Viviano (Bologna)
Defenders: Davide Astori (Cagliari), Leonardo Bonucci
(Juventus), Mattia Cassani (Palermo), Domenico Criscito (Genoa),
Giorgio Chiellini (Juventus), Christian Maggio (Napoli), Andrea
Ranocchia (Inter Milan)
Midfielders: Alberto Aquilani (Juventus), Daniele De Rossi
(AS Roma), Sebastian Giovinco (Parma), Stefano Mauri (Lazio),
Riccardo Montolivo (Fiorentina), Thiago Motta (Inter), Antonio
Nocerino (Palermo), Angelo Palombo (Sampdoria)
Forwards: Marco Borriello (Roma), Antonio Cassano (AC
Milan), Alessandro Matri (Juventus), Giampaolo Pazzini (Inter),
Giuseppe Rossi (Villarreal)
Bayern fans snap up 45,000 tickets to watch Champions League final live at Allianz Arena
When Sir Alex wakes up on Monday morning without team to manage, he will not be putting his feet up
Paris Saint-Germain midfielder announces he will be retiring at the end of the current season
Record goal-scorer signs a one-year contract extension with Europa League winners Chelsea
Ten years on, the legends speak to FFT
Your questions answered by an A to Z of legends
He's here, he's there, he's...
The cost of Premier League away travel
Nike CR7 IX for you
FourFourTwo is brought to you by Haymarket Consumer Media & FourFourTwo is part of Haymarket Sport
| International Licensing | © Haymarket Media Group 2010