Osvaldo relishing opportunity
Pablo Osvaldo admits it is a dream to be involved in Italy's senior squad ahead of his probable debut against Northern Ireland.
Last Updated: 10/10/11 8:48pm
Pablo Osvaldo admits it is a dream to be involved in Italy's senior squad ahead of his probable debut in Tuesday night's Euro 2012 qualifier against Northern Ireland in Pescara.
Italy coach Cesare Prandelli turned to the Roma striker after losing Manchester City's Mario Balotelli and Inter Milan's Giampaolo Pazzini to injury last week.
And Osvaldo is relishing the opportunity to be included, although he is not yet getting carried away by a possible involvement in the finals of Euro 2012.
"I am very happy to be here for the first time and am I'm still looking around with an air of disbelief," Osvaldo said to Gazzetta dello Sport.
"I want to thank Prandelli for his faith in me.
"It's true I am only here because of an injury crisis, but I still consider it important that the coach had me in mind.
"It's too early to say if I will be a part of Euro 2012 squad, right now it's just a dream to be here."
Osvaldo's inclusion was met by criticism from some Lega Nord (Northern League) politicians who claim the Argentina-born player should not be allowed to represent Italy.
Osvaldo has Italian heritage and has already played for the Italy Under-21 team.
"The criticism from politicians is ridiculous," Osvaldo said. "I have an Italian wife, Italian children and an Italian family and I also play in Serie A.
"Moreover, I have already sung the national anthem for the Under-21 team.
"I would have no problem facing Argentina in the future because it would mean I would be a part of the Italian national team."