Football

No Italy call-up for injured duo

Juventus' injured pair Claudio Marchisio and Giorgio Chiellini were omitted from the Italy squad as coach Gian Piero Ventura called five new players into his squad for upcoming games against Albania and Holland.

Italy host Albania in a World Cup qualifier on Saturday morning (Singapore time), before facing the Dutch in Amsterdam on March 28.

Marchisio was on the bench nursing a knock as Juve beat Sampdoria 1-0 on Sunday.

With Chiellini also injured, Ventura has called up Inter's Danilo D'Ambrosio, Atalanta's Leonardo Spinazzola and Bologna's Simone Verdi and Serie B goalkeeper Alex Meret, who plays for SPAL, on loan from Udinese, in Italy's second division.

Ventura was later forced to call up Atalanta striker Andrea Petagna after Southampton's Manolo Gabbiadini was also hurt in a defeat at Tottenham.

Italy are second in Group G, behind leaders Spain on goal difference. - AFP

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