Sunday, March 26, 2017

Florenzi: Conte exit changes nothing for Italy

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 22 Mar 2016

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Alessandro Florenzi insists Antonio Conte’s announcement he will step down as Italy coach after Euro 2016 has not affected the squad.

The former Juventus boss will leave his post following the finals in France after admitting he was keen to return to club football, with Chelsea widely expected to appoint him as successor to Guus Hiddink, who will leave at the end of the season.

Florenzi has denied Conte’s attitude has altered since his exit was confirmed and is adamant their preparations for the Euros will remain the same.

“Why should it change the relationship? We’re all united towards the same goal, which is to represent the best of our country to Europe. We want to do well,” said the Roma midfielder.

“Conte’s attitude has not changed. He makes us work hard, as usual.

“The feelings are very positive. We’re a well-blended group, the players have known each other for six or seven years.

“We’ve had good games in the past where the result has eluded us, but from a tactical point of view we’re in a good way because we have players who can change our shape.”

Italy face Spain in a friendly on Thursday and Florenzi is eager to lay down a marker to the reigning European Champions.

“Conte told us of their strong points. There are many but we have time to find them,” he said.

“The key will be not to let them play, because from a playing point of view they are the best in the world. 

“We’ll face them without fear. It’s a friendly, but we want to do well.”

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