Italy stay focused despite match-fixing probe

Italy’s Giorgio Chiellini believes the country’s latest match-fixing scandal will not affect their preparation for Friday’s match with Estonia.Former international striker Giuseppe Signori, 43, was among 16 people arrested in a coordinated police operation on Wednesday, but Juventus defender Chiellini was adamant the squad would be fully focused on their Euro 2012 qualifier in Modena.

“Let’s see what happens,” Chiellini said. “If the allegations are confirmed I’m surely a bit angry and disappointed, first of all as a player, and as a citizen for other reasons.”

“Above all because the image of Italian football and Italian players will be spoiled, but we all hope the scandal won’t be serious.”

“As I’ve already said, I believe there must be some truth, otherwise there wouldn’t have been investigations, but I hope it’s not that much.”

Chiellini said Italy, who could all but wrap up a berth in Euro 2012 with a win on Friday, would be wary of tiredness after a long domestic campaign.

“The match will be more difficult than we might think, simply because it’s June,” he said.

“The Serie A season finished 10 days ago and almost all the players have played 50 games and everyone is already thinking of going on holidays and then focusing on next season.”

“That’s the biggest risk, we are a bit tired and of course it’s not always so easy to restart after being off for a few days.”

 


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