Italy coach Cesare Prandelli has defended the selection of AC Milan striker Mario Balotelli.

Prandelli has called up Balotelli despite his latest suspension.

"I can't add another punishment to a punishment," said Prandelli. "Had there not been a midweek round of League games then Balotelli would not be here.

"His three-match ban expired today, after yesterday's Juventus-Milan, so that is why he has been selected.

"I have never called up a suspended player before. The rules are clear, I don't see the need for controversies."

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