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Tuesday, 14 November, 2000, 11:49 GMT
Italy squad at a glance
Italian team line-up
Italy take their bow before the Euro 2000 final
While England caretaker boss Peter Taylor has opted for a youthful squad, Italian counterpart Giovanni Trapattoni has kept faith with his experienced stars.

Eleven of the 14 players who featured in the Euro 2000 final against Italy are in Trapattoni's 21-man squad, ensuring a fearsome baptism of fire for many of Taylor's youngsters.

Here, BBC Sport Online casts an eye over the pick of the Italian stars:



Toldo

Francesco Toldo (Fiorentina)

Superbly consistent with Fiorentina, where he has remained despite summer interest from Roma and Manchester United.

One of the outstanding keepers of Euro 2000 after a late call-up; he saw Italy through a penalty shootout with co-hosts Holland and was just a minute away from keeping the clean sheet which would have won the final before France's later fightback.

Made his international debut back in 1995 and is holding his place under pressure from Gianluigi Buffon.




Gianluigi Buffon (Parma)

Regarded as one of the best goalkeepers in the world. He made his Serie A debut in the 1995-96 season aged just 17.

Within two seasons he was in the Italy squad, making his national-team debut as a first-half substitute for the injured Gianluca Pagliuca in Italy's 1998 World Cup play-off clash with Russia.

In freezing temperatures Buffon took the field in his trademark short-sleeved goalkeeper's shirt and made several crucial saves to become an instant hero but missed Euro 2000 after breaking a bone in his hand.




Valerio Bertotto (Udinese)

A loyal Udinese servant, after first making a name for himself at lower division Alessandria.

A typical hard, uncompromising central defender, solid in the air and in the tackle, though his greatest strength is when he's one-on-one with an opposing forward.

Neither the fastest nor the most skilful player, he makes up for his lack of pace with his experience and positional sense and is currently rated at 7m.



Fabio Cannavaro (Parma)

Cannavaro

A teak-tough central defender who was outstanding throughout Italy's miserly Euro 2000 campaign.

Made his debut against Northern Ireland in 1997 and has frustrated opposing strikers ever since with his man-marking skills. England's strikers won't have a better test of their abilities.



Alessandro Nesta (Lazio)

Nesta

After Paolo Maldini, Nesta is the most important and influential member of Italy's back line.

A stylish defender, he matches finesse with force and possesses an excellent passing ability.

Made his Lazio debut as a 17-year-old and has been an international regular since 1996.



Francesco Coco (AC Milan)

Burst on to the scene at AC Milan in 1994, replacing the injured Paolo Maldini.

The Milan stalwart was hardly missed, mainly because Coco was magnificent.

Not as tall as Maldini, he nevertheless had the same loping stride and physical presence and became an overnight sensation.

Maldini's return and a host of injuries meant chances were limited after that, but Coco remains the total package: fast, skilful, strong in the tackle and an excellent crosser of the ball.



Damiano Zenoni (Atalanta)

The only surprise in Trpattoni's squad, Zenoni is the twin brother of Atalanta right back Cristiano.

The 23-year-old had not even played in Serie A this season, but Atalanta's good start and Trapattoni's promise to select players from the less fashionable clubs have prompted his call-up.



Giuseppe Pancaro (Lazio)

A versatile defender who can play on the left or right. Physically strong, he has great stamina and is one of the most reliable and consistent performers in Italian football.

He rarely gets injured, never picks up needless bookings and has been in excellent form so far this season.



Daniele Adani (Fiorentina)

Had five impressive years at Brescia despite tasting relegation to Serie B twice.

He failed to make the grade at Lazio before that but is now regarded as one of Italy's up-and-coming defenders.



Paolo Maldini (Milan)

Maldini

Arguably the greatest left-sided defender of his generation.

Now aged 31, Maldini has lost some of his pace but still an outstanding addition, and looks certain to top Dino Zoff's Italian record of 112 caps.



Massimo Ambrosini (AC Milan)

Ambrosini

A home favourite, having joined Milan in 1995 after developing his trade in the youth system at Cesena.

Possesses a wide range of skills but his great strength is his work-rate and he also possesses a ferocious shot.



Demetrio Albertini (AC Milan)

Albertini

A wonderfully composed midfielder with bags of experience having played with Milan and his country for many years.

Another San Siro hero, having spent gis whole career with Milan, apart from a loan spell with Padova Calcio in 1991. Has helped the club to five league championship medals and the 1994 European Cup.



Gennaro Gattuso (AC Milan)

Controversially signed by Rangers when still on youth forms at Perugia in 1997 but strangely released by Walter Smith after making the Italy Under 21 team.

Nicknamed Animalino (baby animal, after a Muppets character) by Milan fans, Gattuso is an uncompromising tackler.

Won his first senior cap for the Azzuri earlier this year and also played for his country at the Olympics.



Luigi Di Biagio (Inter)

Di Biagio

Began his career with Lazio but came to prominence with their bitter city rivals Roma.

Essentially a defensive midfielder, his strength lies in breaking up opposition attacks and he only gets forward when needed.

Had an excellent World Cup in 1998 but will be remembered for missing a penalty in the shoot-out against France.



Angelo Di Livio (Fiorentina)

Di Livio

Returned to the squad in time for Euro 2000 after nearly a year out of the international picture.

A very experienced midfielder who has played with no less than seven Italian clubs, his strength and fearsome commitment are matched by his excellent crossing ability.

Was sent-off against England in the 0-0 draw in Rome in 1997.



Stefano Fiore (Udinese)

Fiore

One of the stars of Serie A last season, despite playing for one of the lesser known Italian teams.

Much of Udinese's play comes from the midfield creation of Fiore but he can also play behind the two strikers. Won his first Italian cap in February this year.



Gianluca Pessotto (Juventus)

Pessotto

A useful utility player, who can play at left-sided defence or midfield and can also be used as a man-marker.

His finest performance for Italy was probably in a man-marking role at France 98 when he stifled the performance of his Juventus team-mate Zinedine Zidane.



Marco Delvecchio (Roma)

Delvecchio

Won a surprise call-up to the starting 11 for the Euro 2000 final against France and responded with a goal that so nearly won the trophy for Dino Zoff's side.

A powerful figure and strong in the air, Delvecchio joined Roma from Inter in November 1995, but has not always been popular with the fans - although he seems to have won them over now.



Alessandro Del Piero (Juventus)

Del Piero

Undoubtedly one of the game's exceptional talents, yet has not always returned his best performances for the national side.

Del Piero hasn't quite regained his best form since returning from knee ligament damage which kept him out for almost an entire season and missed a sitter in the Euro 2000 final which could have put Italy 2-0 in front.



Filippo Inzaghi (Juventus)

Filippo Insaghi

Emerged with a bang when he topped the Serie A goalscoring charts with Atalanta, a feat which prompted a move to Juventus.

A pacy and intelligent striker, he has maintained his free-scoring form throughout his career and will prove a real handful for England's new-look defence.



Simone Inzaghi (Lazio)

Younger brother of the more-established Filippo, the pair could now team-up to form a sibling strike partnership against England.

With four goals to his name already in Serie A this season, Inzaghi's recall to the squad was one of only two changes from Trapattoni's previous squad.

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