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Pirlo and Buffon head Azzurri squad
by Paul Kennedy, February 26th, 2012 8:19PM

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[ITALY-USA] Seven players from Serie A leader Juventus -- including World Cup 2006 champions Gianluigi Buffon and Andrea Pirlo -- head the 23-player squad Italy coach Cesar Prandelli named for Wednesday's friendly against the USA in Genoa (TV: 2:45 pm ET, ESPN, ESPN3.com, Galavision).

Roma's 20-year-old striker Fabio Borini is the only uncapped player in the team.

Three foreign-based players -- Salvatore Sirigu and Thiago Motta of Paris St. Germain and Domenico Criscito of Zenit St. Petersburg  -- were called up, but Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli was omitted.

Italy Roster:
GOALKEEPERS: Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus), Morgan De Sanctis (Napoli), Salvatore Sirigu (Paris St. Germain/FRA), Emiliano Viviano (Palermo).

DEFENDERS: Ignazio Abate (AC Milan), Davide Astori (Cagliari), Federico Balzaretti (Palermo), Andrea Barzagli (Juventus), Leonardo Bonucci (Juventus), Giorgio Chiellini (Juventus), Domenico Criscito (Zenit St. Petersburg/RUS), Christian Maggio (Napoli), Angelo Ogbonna (Torino).

MIDFIELDERS: Daniele De Rossi (Roma), Claudio Marchisio (Juventus), Riccardo Montolivo (Fiorentina), Thiago Motta (Paris St. Germain/ITA), Antonio Nocerino (AC Milan), Andrea Pirlo (Juventus).

FORWARDS: Fabio Borini (Roma), Sebastian Giovinco (Parma), Alessandro Matri (Juventus), Giampaolo Pazzini (Inter Milan)



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