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Prandelli set to start Giuseppe Rossi

Italy coach Cesare Prandelli hopes to see Giuseppe Rossi in action against Nigeria in London after being deprived of the Serie A top scorer versus Germany due to tonsillitis.

Giuseppe Rossi celebrates after his 14-minute hat trick earned Fiorentina a 4-2 comeback win at home to Juventus.
Rossi has been in prolific form for his club Fiorentina.

Fiorentina forward Rossi has found the back of the net 11 times in Serie A so far this season and Prandelli wanted to see him partner Mario Balotelli on Friday night.

That did not happen as Rossi missed out through illness, but he is now fit and ready to show Prandelli his worth.

"Rossi's ready and the idea is to see him from the start," Prandelli said at a news conference. "He's capable of playing as centre-forward or just behind and he knows how to adapt and dictate the tempo."

Seeing Prandelli's first-choice strike partnership may nevertheless have to wait until 2014 with Balotelli regarded doubtful for the Craven Cottage clash on Monday night.

He is carrying a knock along with Riccardo Montolivo, Claudio Marchisio and Daniele De Rossi, leaving the head coach with an option of fielding Rossi as a lone striker.

"Certainly if we do that, then we'd have to find two or three midfielders who can attack the opposition defence," Prandelli said. "Talking about 4-4-2 and 3-5-2 is just a load of numbers; each game gives us something to think about.

"At the moment, I'm interested in verifying our tactics and, in particular, understanding how to give more depth to our midfield, to ensure it can defend and attack. I'll be making lots of experiments because we don't have much time."


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