New interim Italy coach Luigi Di Biagio has organised his first training camp ahead of friendlies against Argentina and England, the Italian Football Federation (FIGC) said Thursday.


The three-day training camp from Monday, February 26 to Wednesday, February 28 will take place at Italy’s Technical Centre at Coverciano in Florence.

Di Biagio will unveil the players he will call up on February 23 amid reports that legendary goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon, who had announced his international retirement after the World Cup flop, could be called up.

Buffon, 40, had said he intends to retire from football altogether after this season, but has in recent weeks appeared to be considering playing on towards Euro 2022.

Without a full-time coach since Gian Piero Ventura was forced out after their shock World Cup elimination in November, four-time world champions Italy take on both England and Argentina in friendlies in March.

Di Biagio is an outsider amongst a star line-up of names being linked with the job including Roberto Mancini, Antonio Conte, Claudio Ranieri and Carlo Ancelotti.

Italy’s national training centre at Coverciano will also open its gates to fans for the first time on February 24 ahead of its 60th anniversary next November.

The FIGC has invested five million euros in the centre with three new playing fields, changing rooms and an athletics track.

From last month, it also become a video assistant referee (VAR) centre of international excellence, thanks the installation of a latest generation simulator, where Italian referees and the other Federations are able to train.

FIFA’s referees will soon be in Coverciano to prepare ahead of the 2018 World Cup starts in June.


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