CONFIRMED: Italy line-up v Malta: Southampton star makes debut

Italy Azzuri

Southampton striker Graziano Pelle makes his senior Italy debut, whilst Matteo Darmian comes into central defence and Andrea Pirlo is replaced by a fully fit Marco Verratti.

Italy continue their Euro 2016 qualifying campaign on Monday with a trip to Malta.

Antonio Conte’s men come into their test against Malta at the Ta’ Qali Stadium sporting a 100% record, having picked up six points in two games.

The Azzurri began the qualifying campaign by disposing of Norway 2-0 in Oslo in early September before beating Azerbaijan 2-1 in Palermo on Friday evening.

Giorgio Chiellini put the Italians on top at the Stadio Renzo Barbera before cancelling out his own strike with an own goal, only to net the winner late in the game in a twist of fate.

Italy had been expected to secure a comfortable win over Azerbaijan but instead endured a nervy evening, so Conte will be expecting an improved attacking performance in Malta.

Norway take on Bulgaria at home and Croatia welcome Azerbaijan in other Group H games.

Italy starting XI (3-5-2): Buffon; Darmian, Bonucci, Chiellini; Candreva, Florenzi, Verratti, Marchisio, Pasqual; Pelle, Immobile

Italy bench: Sirigu, Perin, Ogbonna, De Sciglio, Pirlo, Aquilani, Parolo, Poli, Destro, Giovinco, Zaza

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