Balotelli back in Conte's squad

2014-11-10 09:12
Mario Balotelli (Supplied)
Mario Balotelli (Supplied)

Milan - Maverick striker Mario Balotelli has been called up by Italy for the first time since the World Cup in June after being included on Sunday in the squad for next weekend's Euro 2016 qualifier at home to Croatia.

It is the first time the Liverpool striker, heavily criticised for his performance at the World Cup when Italy went out in the group stage, has been picked since Antonio Conte replaced Cesare Prandelli as coach.

Torino defender Emiliano Moretti, who played for Italy at under-21 and under-23 level, was given his first senior call-up at the age of 33.

Genoa midfielder Andrea Bertolacci and Sampdoria midfielder Roberto Soriano were also named in the squad for the first time.

Italy have won all four of their matches under Conte, a friendly against the Netherlands and Euro qualifiers against Norway, Azerbaijan and Malta.

They are level on nine points with Croatia, who also have a 100 percent qualifying record, at the top of Group H.

Midfielder Andrea Pirlo and forward Lorenzo Insigne were left out because of injury.

Conte's men meet Croatia on Sunday. The Italian federation (FIGC) said a separate squad would be named next week for the friendly against Albania on Nov. 18.

Read more on:    italy  |  international  |  mario balotelli  |  soccer

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