Italy news

Chiellini out of England clash

Italy defender out with a hamstring injury

ESPN staff

Giorgio Chiellini is a key component of Italy's backline© Getty Images

Italy have been dealt a blow ahead of their quarter-final with England as defender Giorgio Chiellini has been ruled out with a thigh injury sustained in Monday's 2-0 win versus Republic of Ireland.

Paul: Azzurri must show quality

Chiellini, 27, suffered the injury in Monday's 2-0 Group C win and was replaced by fellow centre-back Leonardo Bonucci, who is now likely to keep his place alongside Andrea Barzagli against the English.

"It is clear that he cannot play on Sunday but we will try to get him fit for the rest of the tournament hoping Italy go further," team doctor Enrico Castellacci said in a statement after bringing forward medical tests originally due on Wednesday.

Chiellini has been Italy's most consistent defender in the past four years but made a mistake for Mario Mandzukic's equaliser in the 1-1 draw with Croatia in the group stage.

Azzurri coach Cesare Prandelli had been optimistic Chiellini could be at his disposal, having said: "I have faith in our great physios and medical staff to get him ready."

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