Bari defender Leonardo Bonucci admits he's nervous ahead of making his Italy debut against Cameroon.

There's expectations that Italy coach Marcello Lippi will hand Bonucci a start tonight.

"For me this means standing next to those who made the history of Italian football and who will continue to do so," he grinned.

"It is an indescribable moment for me. Last summer I had been relegated into Serie C with Pisa.

"I'd go so far as to describe this as a traumatic excitement."

Bonucci has received advice from World Cup winner and 2006 World Player of the Year Fabio Cannavaro.

"The captain told me to relax and play it simple. The Coach invited me to just do what I do best."