Trap wary of Italy threat

Republic of Ireland boss won't underestimate Italy despite turmoil

Giovanni Trapattoni: Will not be underestimating Italy at Euro 2012

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Giovanni Trapattoni has warned his Republic of Ireland players not to be fooled by the problems engulfing Group C rivals Italy.

Trapattoni's native country have had their Euro 2012 preparations disrupted with yet another match-fixing scandal blighting the Italian game.

A major earthquake in Italy then forced the postponement of their midweek friendly against Luxembourg in Parma.

When Cesare Prandelli's men finally got on the field things went badly as they were beaten 3-0 by Russia in Zurich on Friday evening.

But Trapattoni, who coached Italy at Euro 2004, believes the Azzurri will still be formidable opponents when they take on his Ireland side in the final round of group games on June 18th.

"It would be a great mistake if you think Italy is this because we don't know how they have done in their training camp," he said.

"Be sure when we meet Italy, Italy will be another team.

"What would happen if we lost 3-0 here with Ireland? It would be the same. If we lost a game 3-0, everybody would criticise us."


The Republic have enjoyed serene progress in comparison with the players at their Italian training camp refocusing after the saga of Kevin Foley's exclusion.

Trapattoni's only concern will be keeping his squad fit with goalkeeper Shay Given edging his way back following a knee problem and now suffering from blisters.

But the 73-year-old boss claims Given only missed training on Saturday as a precautionary measure.

He said: "It was better also to let him have a rest because he has worked too much. It is better that he is fresh, and also mentally fresh."

Given will play against Hungary in Budapest on Monday, thus reducing the possibility that another keeper could receive a belated call-up.

Trapattoni said: "Not now, no, and I hope not during the game.

"It is true that we have a possibility to call another, but it would be better if we finished this friendly game without a problem."