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Rossi & the Azzurri

Former/Semi-American Giuseppe Rossi is looking ahead to this summer's upcoming Olympic Games in China, as he is set to star for the "Azzurrini". While he may claim to be fearless when it comes to going up against the likes of Messi and Pato, the real question to be answered this summer might not be how good the Italian youth side is, but what the 2010 squad will look like. Marcelo Lippi is "optimistic" about the youth in Italy, and apparently wants to bring a lot of youth into the 2010 national team for South Africa. Surely Italy can do better than this summer's miserable Euro washout, and perhaps going younger is the way to do it. If Lippi does look to the U-23s, surely Rossi will be a top candidate to get significant pitch time in two years. This year's La Liga action will be telling for Rossi. After a breakout year between 2007-2008, this is the year where he must truly take it to a new level in order to break into the national squad. He made the brave decision to suit up in blue instead of white, but he will have to play at a very different level to make Italy's national squad than he would have in his home country. Regardless, he has reassured his commitment to Villarreal, which is a welcome sign. Hopefully we can get a few more years of his skillful displays at El Madrigal.