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Zaza’s Fine Scoring Run Rewarded With Recall To Italy Squad For World Cup Playoff

Zaza’s Fine Scoring Run Rewarded With Recall To Italy Squad For World Cup Playoff

Simone Zaza has been handed an international recall ahead of Italy’s crunch World Cup qualifying play-off against Sweden.

Valencia forward Zaza has appeared only once for his country since an awful penalty shoot-out miss against Germany in the quarter-finals of Euro 2016, with the player subsequently apologising for his woeful spot-kick.

But the 26-year-old’s fine form in LaLiga – where he has scored nine goals in 11 games for high-flying Valencia – has been enough to regain his place under Gian Piero Ventura.

There is also a place in the squad for Napoli’s Brazilian-born midfielder Jorginho – who is not yet tied down to play for Italy – alongside the returning Alessandro Florenzi of Roma.

Regular squad members Daniele de Rossi, Marco Verratti and Andrea Belotti are all back having returned to full fitness with their respective clubs.

The Azzurri will travel to Solna on Friday before welcoming Sweden to Milan three days later as Ventura’s side look to book their place at a 15th consecutive World Cup finals.

Italy squad in full:

Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus), Gianluigi Donnarumma (AC Milan), Mattia Perin (Genoa); Davide Astori (Fiorentina), Andrea Barzagli (Juventus), Leonardo Bonucci (AC Milan), Giorgio Chiellini (Juventus), Danilo D’Ambrosio (Inter), Matteo Darmian (Manchester United), Daniele Rugani (Juventus), Leonardo Spinazzola (Atalanta), Davide Zappacosta (Chelsea); Fernando Bernadeschi (Juventus), Antonio Candreva (Inter), Daniele de Rossi (Roma), Stephan El Shaarawy (Roma), Alessandro Florenzi (Roma), Roberto Gagliardini (Inter), Lorenzo Insigne (Napoli), Jorginho (Napoli), Marco Parolo (Lazio), Marco Verratti (Paris Saint-Germain); Andrea Belotti (Torino), Eder (Inter), Manolo Gabbiadini (Southampton), Ciro Immobile (Lazio), Simone Zaza (Valencia).

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