Italy Coach Prandelli Has "Absolutely Not" Decided Future

by
Reuters
Cesare Prandelli has "absolutely not decided" on his future as Italy coach, he said on Thursday while pouring cold water on speculation he would quit after next year's World Cup.

Italy's coach Prandelli reacts during their Euro 2012 quarter-final soccer match against England at Olympic Stadium in Kiev

Cesare Prandelli has "absolutely not decided" on his future as Italy coach, he said on Thursday while pouring cold water on speculation he would quit after next year's World Cup.

The Italian media have spent the last two days debating possible successors for Prandelli who revived the team after their 2010 World Cup flop and led them to the Euro 2012 final.

"As far as looking after my future is concerned, there is the utmost serenity," he told reporters in Palermo ahead of Friday's World Cup qualifier at home to Bulgaria.

"My thoughts are exclusively focused on qualifying for the World Cup, everything else will be done with the utmost transparency.

"I have absolutely not decided yet, we have maximum respect and concentration over what we have to do," he added.

Unbeaten Italy top Group B with 14 points from six games and can guarantee first place, and qualification for the finals in Brazil, by beating Bulgaria and then Czech Republic on Tuesday.

With Mario Balotelli and Pablo Osvaldo suspended, Prandelli said he had not decided on his front line for Friday's game.

"Bulgaria are a particularly difficult team," he said. "They are competitive, defend well and break quickly."