Italians looking forward to their first Euro game

Society Materials 9 June 2008 00:16 (UTC +04:00)

World Champions Italy are looking forward to starting their Euro 2008 campaign with a Group C game against the Netherlands in Berne on Monday, dpa reported.

Coach Robert Donadoni told a press conference on Sunday that he was confident ahead of their game. "The Dutch are strong. It will be a very difficult game. My team is relaxed, but highly motivated. All players know exactly what they need to do."

Italy will go into their game without Fabio Cannavaro, who underwent an operation in Austria after injuring himself during training. The captain though has returned to the team and will cheer them on from the stands.

Donadoni admits that Cannavaro's absence will weaken the side. "It is not easy to replace him."