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Lippi loses rag over questions about Sampdoria's Cassano

Italy coach Marcello Lippi admits he's fed-up with questions about Sampdoria striker Antonio Cassano.

Lippi was again bombarded with questions about Cassano's absence from his latest squad and rapped: "You have bugged me.

"This is the most important week for us in the two years of qualification. I want to talk about Italy. There are no more David and Goliath situations.

"We expect an Ireland team similar to the one that has done so well [so far]. However, we have to get some points and we want to qualify on Saturday.

"It's important to come away with a result. Trapattoni knows how to rally his players, and I am not expecting any relaxation.

"We have to focus on this game. We cannot think about getting just one point as this will be dangerous," Lippi concluded.

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