Cesare Prandelli has revitalized the Azzurri. He won the first two qualifiers of the European Championships of 2012, and he looks ready to win even more. While Italy only faced Estonia and the Faroe Islands, the two wins were important nonetheless. And now, as Prandelli looks to call up another set of Italians to face Northern Ireland and Serbia in the next two qualifiers, he’s thrown in some new names.
The ex-Fiorentina coach has revealed that among the players he is looking at, there’s the Roma captain Francesco Totti. At 34 years-old, the experienced forward won the 2006 World Cup under Lippi, and Prandelli is looking to bring back the Totti-Cassano partnership. Here’s what the coach said regarding Totti:
We are looking for quality, and Totti has shown to have the technical qualities, but also great personality. The idea to see Totti and Cassano together in the national team together is a specific desire. There was talk about friendship, the relationship that exists between the two: we want to create a chance which would be an example for kids to come watch the match.
So it’s very possible that you’ll see Totti and Cassano playing together against Northern Ireland, or Serbia. But Prandelli hasn’t forgotten about his other star striker, Mario Balotelli. In fact, the coach is very eager to restart using the Manchester City forward. Prandelli here commenting about Mario:
I miss him, because I really have the desire and intention to try an attack with players of his caliber. He presented himself wonderfully in the national team, and I wish him now only to recover from his injury the best he can.
After these comments, could we be seeing a front three of Cassano, Totti, and Balotelli? The best way that trident would work would be to have Cassano and Totti both playing right behind Balotelli. But for now, Balotelli is injured, and his return is set around November or December, depending how the recovery goes.
Prandelli also commented on the general state of the Italian national team, and where he wants to take them in the future:
My national team is one which is growing little by little. Our intention is to have youngsters grow, and I’m convinced that we’ll find some soon of quality. I don’t know when we’ll realize this project of mine. At the moment, we’re thinking about unifying the two things: playing good games and reaching the objective of qualification.
Prandelli will be revealing his squad on Sunday, October 3rd. This squad will face Northern Ireland away from home, and then Serbia in Italy, both matches which have the potential to be difficult. So lets hope that Prandelli knows what he’s doing regarding Totti, and we might see the Azzurri grab another pair of wins.