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Feb, 7, 2011

Brazilian-born Motta wins Italy call

Italy have included Brazilian-born midfielder Thiago Motta in their squad to face Germany in an international friendly on Wednesday.

Motta, who represents Inter Milan, holds an Italian passport but played for Brazil at the 2003 CONCACAF Gold Cup when the country fielded an Under-23 side.

Italy believe these appearances will not be considered as full international fixtures but are still awaiting formal confirmation from FIFA that Motta will be able to represent the Azzurri.

Inter president Massimo Moratti said: "Motta's call-up is beautiful news and I'm very happy for him. He has done really well and I believe he can truly be useful to the national team."

Coach Cesare Prandelli also gave Brazilian-born striker Amauri a debut against Ivory Coast at the start of his reign.

Prandelli has handed first call-ups to forward Alessandro Matri, who recently joined Juventus on loan from Cagliari, and Sebastian Giovinco, on loan at Parma from Juventus.

Goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon returns to the national side for the first time since suffering a back injury at the start of Italy's ill-fated World Cup campaign in South Africa.

Squad: Buffon (Juventus), Sirigu (Palermo), Viviano (Bologna); Astori (Cagliari), Bonucci (Juventus), Cassani (Palermo), Criscito (Genoa), Chiellini (Juventus), Maggio (Napoli), Ranocchia (Inter); Aquilani (Juventus), De Rossi (Roma), Giovinco (Parma), Mauri (Lazio), Montolivo (Fiorentina), Motta (Inter), Nocerino (Palermo), Palombo (Sampdoria); Borriello (Roma), Cassano (AC Milan), Matri (Juventus), Pazzini (Inter), Rossi (Villarreal).

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