Di Biagio still harbours Azzurri hope

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By Nadia Carminati
Brescia's Luigi Di Biagio says he feels he has a new lease of life as a defender and says he would love to be recalled to the Italian squad.

The midfielder has been converted into a more withdrawn role since his summer move from Internazionale and has taken to his role at the back like a duck to water.

Brescia coach Gianni De Biasi hailed Di Biagio for his performance in his side's win at Roma at the weekend saying Azzurri coach Giovanni Trapattoni should recall him to the national squad, a sentiment the ex-Giallorossi man would be delighted with.

"If it happens (a recall) it would be really satisfying for me and De Biasi too," Di Biagio told Gazzetta dello Sport.

"Anyway, I think the Italian national team is good in all roles.

"I still have a good relationship with Trapattoni and that's an advantage."

The 32-year-old said he has no problem playing in either defence or midfield and that Trapattoni has asked him to perform at the back before, and says he takes inspiration from Italian legend Giuseppe Bergomi, who played for Italy well into his 30s.

"Defender or midfielder? For the national team, I can play two roles," opined Di Biagio.

"Before, in a friendly before the World Cup in Japan, Trap asked me to take on the responsibility of playing in defence.

"What is the future for me with the national team? It's just a bonus that people are talking about it.

"It's no pressure. Let's say I'd like to be like Bergomi of the World Cup in 1998.

"He got a call-up surprisingly at the age of 35, where as in June, I will only be 33."