Pasqual shocked by call-up

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Fiorentina defender Manuel Pasqual cannot believe he is in the Italy squad.

The 23-year-old left back has forced his way into Marcello Lippi's World Cup plans after his Viola performances earned him a place in the 23-man party that will face Germany on Wednesday.

Although many observers believed a call-up was a formality, Pasqual says he is still struggling to come to terms with the shock.

"People have been telling me for months that sooner or later I would be selected, but I didn't believe them," he exclaimed.

"Now that it is all true I just can't hide my joy. I really can't describe what emotions I am now feeling."

The former Arezzo man is still enjoying his first season in Serie A and he was quick to thank his Viola team-mates for their help in catapulting him into the spotlight.

"The fact that I have got this result is down to my team-mates who have helped me reach this level over the last few months," he continued.

"I also, obviously, owe a lot to coach Cesare Prandelli who has helped motivate me and has always believed in my abilities.

"The club also deserve praise for choosing me from Serie B and giving me the opportunity to play in the first division."