â€śThe Italian national side is my dream and Iâ€™m not hiding from it,â€ť he told the Gazzetta dello Sport. â€śIf the call came then I wouldnâ€™t think it over for more than a second â€“ I would instantly say yes.
â€śI have Italian blood, I feel Italian, and I simply ask to be considered in the race for a place in the squad.â€ť
The central midfielder has worn the yellow jersey of Brazil in his career before now, but he insists that is part of the past.
â€śI have played for Brazil from Under-17 to Under-23 level, but they didnâ€™t think I could be part of the Selecao,â€ť he added. â€śToday I would choose Italy. I had a passport even before I came here.
â€śBut Iâ€™m not asking for any presents from anyone. I naturally want to earn a place in the national side through what I do on the field of play.â€ť