MILAN (AP) — Roberto Mancini called up Juventus defender Mattia De Sciglio on Sunday to replace the injured Giovanni Di Lorenzo in the Italy squad for the World Cup playoffs.
Di Lorenzo, who has been a regular under Mancini and was part of the European Championship-winning team last year, was forced to withdraw from the squad after the Napoli full back sprained his right knee during Saturday’s 2-1 victory over Udinese in Serie A.
De Sciglio made the last of his 39 international appearances in 2019.
Italy faces North Macedonia in Palermo, Sicily, on Thursday. If the Azzurri beat North Macedonia, they will play the winner of a game between Portugal and Turkey for a spot at the tournament in Qatar later this year.
Italy already failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup. Missing two straight World Cups would be an unprecedented low point for the four-time champion.
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