FIGC President Giancarlo Abete says Italy fans can be excited about the new era under coach Cesare Prandelli.
With Sampdoria striker Antonio Cassano and Inter Milan youngster Mario Balotelli both set to feature tonight against Ivory Coast, Abete says Prandelli is making major changes to the Azzurri's style of play.
“We are starting a new era by looking to quality, as without doubt Cassano and Balotelli are two excellent players who can raise the quality level of the team,” said the Federation chief.
“Naturally it’s all about amalgamating the group and working over time to build a team unit, but undoubtedly quality is important.”
A complete change of direction was welcomed after the Azzurri crashed out of the World Cup in the first round without winning a game.
“There was immense disappointment in South Africa, but we want to get back out there,” continued Abete.
“We begin again with the right spirit, a young team and the objective to work in depth to build our future. It is not looking to one game, but recreating the conditions needed for a competitive Italy side.”