2010 FIFA World Cup — Italy
2010 FIFA World Cup — Italy National Team
2010 FIFA World Cup Italy National Team:
1 Gianluigi BUFFON, 12 Federico MARCHETTI and 14 Morgan DE SANCTIS
2 Christian MAGGIO, 3 Domenico CRISCITO, 4 Giorgio CHIELLINI, 5 Fabio CANNAVARO, 13 Salvatore BOCCHETTI, 19 Gianluca ZAMBROTTA and 23 Leonardo BONUCCI
6 Daniele DE ROSSI, 7 Simone PEPE, 8 Gennaro GATTUSO, 15 Claudio MARCHISIO, 16 Mauro CAMORANESI, 17 Angelo PALOMBO, 21 Andrea PIRLO and 22 Riccardo MONTOLIVO
9 Vincenzo IAQUINTA, 10 Antonio DI NATALE, 11 Alberto GILARDINO, 18 Fabio QUAGLIARELLA and 20 Giampaolo PAZZINI
Top Players Gianluigi Buffon (ITA), Francesco Totti (ITA), Fabio Cannavaro (ITA), Gennaro Gattuso (ITA) and Andrea Pirlo (ITA).
The star players
Billed for a number of years now as one of the finest goalkeepers on the planet, at 31 Gianluigi Buffon remains one of the two pillars of the Italian defence. His spectacular reflexes to keep out a Zinedine Zidane header in extra time during the 2006 Final illustrated just why he has an undisputed claim on the gloves.
The other leader at the back is none other than evergreen captain Fabio Cannavaro. Now 36, the 2006 FIFA World Player of the Year continues to contribute his superb positioПing sense and the vast experience of his 130 caps.
In midfield, tireless tackler Gennaro Gattuso no longer needs any introduction. The 31-year-old is still the motor, battler and all-round talent at the heart of the Azzurri line-up, the man who never admits defeat and whose hunger for victory inspires all those around him.
A veritable monarch in the field of coaching, 61-year-old Marcello Lippi is an expert at making changes that yield results, with no fewer than five of the 12 goals Italy registered at the 2006 FIFA World Cup Germany coming from substitutes. The man with more than an air of Paul Newman has won everything in his career, which is precisely why he called time on his first stint as Italy trainer on 12 July 2006, having clinched the global crown. After the Azzurri floundered at UEFA EURO 2008, however, he did not need much persuasion to return to the role, and he immediately set about rebuilding the defence, remodelling the midfield and trying out a fresh crop of forwards. He puts little stock in his landmark 31 consecutive international matches without defeat, preferring to amass titles than statistics, and his natural feel for the game means his tactical decisions are never called into doubt. For the qualifiers, he called up a total of 36 players, with Cannavaro and full-back Gianluca Zambrotta the players most used (810 minutes each).