Italy coach Marcello Lippi was thrilled with his shadow squad's 3-0 victory over Northern Ireland in last night's friendly in Pisa.
âThis is the real Italian football,â smiled Lippi at the final whistle.
Giuseppe Rossi and Pasquale Foggia scored their first goals at senior level, while Sergio Pellissier netted a spectacular volley on his overall debut.
âThe top teams are full of foreigners, but the others play great football too. Pellissier is an excellent player, as is Mascara and of course we knew Rossi.â
Davide Santon made his senior Italy debut aged 18 after just one cap for the Under-21 side and impressed, confirming his pick for the Confederations Cup.
âI doubt Santon will get egotistical. H has the intelligence to play his football and prove quickly how good he is,â added Lippi.
â[Gennaro] Gattuso needed the match fitness and proved he is a gladiator. I would've left him on for longer, but there was no point risking him.â