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Ronaldo focused on qualification, not prizes

World Cup reaction
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Giuseppe Rossi lands Italy recall

Fiorentina striker Giuseppe Rossi has won a recall to the Italy squad for their upcoming World Cup qualifiers following a two-year absence.

Giuseppe Rossi celebrates after giving Fiorentina the lead against Catania
Giuseppe Rossi has been in impressive form this season.

Rossi, 26, has been in fine form since moving to the Viola in the summer -- after a lengthy lay-off with cruciate ligament damage – and has hit six goals in seven games.

There is also a recall for Roma full-back Federico Balzaretti for the first time since November 2012.

The 31-year-old has been rewarded by Cesare Prandelli for the key role he has played in his club’s fine start to the Serie A season.

Sunderland winger Emanuele Giaccherini, Southampton striker Pablo Daniel Osvaldo and Paris Saint-Germain’s Salvatore Sirigu, Marco Verratti and Thiago Motta have also been included in Prandelli’s squad.

Mario Balotelli, meanwhile, is included despite earning a three-match ban for insulting a referee -- the Italy coach has typically excluded players suspended from domestic competition for violent or aggressive conduct.

Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon is retained and will pass Fabio Cannavaro's all-time appearance record should he earn a 137th cap.

Italy, who have already booked their place at next year's World Cup, meet Denmark in Copenhagen on October 11 before hosting Armenia in Palermo four days later.

Goalkeepers: Buffon (Juventus), Marchetti (Lazio), Sirigu (Paris Saint-Germain).

Defenders: Abate (AC Milan), Astori (Cagliari), Balzaretti (Roma), Bonucci (Juventus), Chiellini (Juventus), De Silvestri (Sampdoria), Pasqual (Fiorentina), Ranocchia (Inter Milan).

Midfielders: Aquilani (Fiorentina), Candreva (Lazio), De Rossi (Roma), Diamanti (Bologna), Florenzi (Roma), Giaccherini (Sunderland), Marchisio (Juventus), Montolivo (AC Milan), Pirlo (Juventus), Poli (AC Milan), Thiago Motta (Paris Saint-Germain), Verratti (Paris Saint-Germain).

Forwards: Balotelli (AC Milan), Cerci (Torino), Gilardino (Genoa), Insigne (Napoli), Osvaldo (Southampton), Rossi (Fiorentina). 

Information from the Press Association was used in this report

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