De Rossi bolsters defence
Daniele De Rossi has revealed he will move into Italy's backline against Spain after the squad was hit with defensive problems.
Last Updated: 08/06/12 4:24pm
Daniele De Rossi has revealed he will move into Italy's backline against Spain on Sunday after the squad was hit with defensive problems.
Andrea Barzagli will miss the group stages with a calf injury, whilst coach Cesare Prandelli was forced to drop Zenit St Petersburg defender Domenico Criscito from the squad as he is under investigation for match-fixing.
The coach may also have been tempted into the tactical switch after Italy's 3-0 defeat to Russia last week.
De Rossi said: "There is a 99% chance that I will play in defence but to say that my role will be of central defender is not exactly right as I will act as a link between the defence and the midfield.
"I have always adapted tactically. I think it is right to do so.
"The fascination of the European Championship is second to the World Cup and if you want to have a starring role, you need to adapt."
It is thought he will play alongside Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci as the Italians look to stifle the threat of the defending champions on Sunday.
De Rossi continued: "We will play against the best in the world and it will be tough. I enjoy watching Spain play.
"They have a midfield line never seen before in the history of football with extraordinary talent with Xavi, Iniesta, Xabi Alonso, and Busquets.
"Spain are the strongest of all the teams but in a tournament like as brief as this one, you can beat them."
The Roma midfielder also hopes that the squad's performances can shake off all talk of the match-fixing scandal that has hit Italian football.
"There has been a lot of talk in the last month but all will be forgotten," he continued.
"A month before we won the World Cup in Germany there was a similar atmosphere as there is now.
"It is slightly annoying because whenever the national team is mentioned the issue of the match-fixing and betting scandal follows, but none of us that are here are involved in this.
"It is not as if all our football is dirty as it may appear."