Prandelli keen to boost Italy's world ranking
FLORENCE, Italy (AP) -Italy coach Cesare Prandelli is again set to give youth a chance in Wednesday's friendly against France, but wants to win to boost the Azzurri's world ranking.
Italy moved into fifth place in the FIFA rankings last week and Prandelli is keen for his side to remain within touching distance of top-ranked Spain.
Prandelli says, "Everyone says the standings don't matter but then everyone looks at them.''
Italy has lost its last four friendlies.
Roma midfielder Daniele De Rossi has been left out of the squad after being sent off in the 3-2 loss to Lazio for punching Stefano Mauri.
De Rossi scored in Italy's last two World Cup qualifying matches but players are expected by Prandelli to adhere to a strict disciplinary code.