Amauri eyes Azzurri call
By Patricio Figueroa and Nadia Carminati
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Palermo's Brazilian star Carvalho Amauri is targeting a surprise Italy call-up.
Palermo's Brazilian hot-shot Carvalho Amauri says he is targeting a surprise call-up to the Italy squad.
The Carapicuiba-born forward moved to Napoli in 2001 and has starred in Italy ever since for Piacenza, Empoli, Messina, Chievo and now the Rosanero.
Having never played for his native Brazil, Amauri's international future is still undecided, and he has revealed he would be happy to play for Roberto Donadoni's Azzurri as he prepares to become an Italian citizen after five years in the country.
"Donadoni? Let's hope he will call me," Amauri told Gazzetta dello Sport.
"I would think seriously to this possibility.
"Brazil is my country, but Italy gave me the possibility to become a famous player. I owe a lot to this country.
"A place with Brazil? There are many champions, it is a really long way."
Amauri underlined his credentials with a goal in Sunday's superb 2-0 win over Milan, and Donadoni says he will not rule out the Brazilian joining fellow South American-born star Mauro Camoranesi as a member of the Azzurri squad.
"I don't exclude he could play with Italy," said the national coach.
"Due to the fact the bureaucratic situation is close to being positively ended, he will enter too in the group of my potential players."
Amauri has scored three times so far in Palermo's superb start to the season that has seen them rise to top spot in Serie A.
However, president Maurizio Zamparini has played down suggestions that his side are capable of challenging for the Scudetto this season, instead voicing his hope that a title will not be beyond them in two years.
"Scudetto? For this we have two years' time," Zamparini told Gazzetta dello Sport.
"In this season I content myself to arrive in the Champions League, we can aim for third place.
"Should we finish second it would be like winning the Scudetto."
Zamparini also praised coach Francesco Guidolin for his sterling work in making Palermo the early pace-setters in Italy.
"Guidolin is allowing the team to play in a really excellent way, against Milan he lined up the five-man midfield that I like a lot, and the ground told us this system is good.
"I'd like sooner or later to see Amauri and [Andrea] Caracciolo together."
The future looks bright for the Rosanero and to that end Zamparini also outlined the Sicilians' plans to move into a new stadium to replace the 38,000 capacity Favorita.
"Should there be no other problems the work will start in June to be ready for the 2008/09 season."