Italy coach Lippi praises Sampdoria's Cassano

Italy coach Marcello Lippi is coy over his plans for Sampdoria striker Antonio Cassano.

Italy coach Marcello Lippi is coy over his plans for Sampdoria striker Antonio Cassano.

Lippi has been roundly criticised for ignoring Cassano during Italy's World Cup qualifying campaign and last night he said: "On Cassano, I will only say he is a great guy and a great player."

On his own future, Lippi added: "I am the national coach for the next six months, then we'll see."

The Azzurri boss has been linked with a return to Juventus in a director's role.

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