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Prandelli selects makeshift starting lineup
by Paul Kennedy, February 28th, 2012 8:27PM

TAGS:  italy, men's national team


[ITALY-USA] World Cup 2006 champions Gianluigi Buffon and Andrea Pirlo are the only players in Coach Cesare Prandelli's starting lineup for Wednesday's friendly against the United States in Genoa that started as many as four Euro 2012 qualifiers last year.

Both forwards, Sebastian Giovinco and Alessandro Matri, and two of the defenders, Andrea Barzagli and Angelo Ogbonna, did not start in any of Italy's seven qualifiers in 2011.

The Nigerian-born Ogbonna, who plays in Serie B for Torino, is one of two foreign-born players in the starting lineup.

Thiago Motta, 29, played for Brazil at the 2003 Gold Cup when it sent an under-23 team but switched to Italy in 2011. Both sets of grandparents are Italian.

The midfielder began his career in Spain with Barcelona, moved to Italy in 2008 and joined Paris St. Germain in January.

Italy -- Buffon; Maggio, Barzagli, Ogbonna, Criscito; Nocerino, Pirlo, Marchisio; Thiago Motta; Giovinco, Matri.

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