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Italy keeps Camoranesi despite injury

June 2, 2010
ESPN.com news services

ROME -- American-born forward Giuseppe Rossi and AC Milan striker Marco Borriello have been dropped from Italy's World Cup team.

Coach Marcello Lippi also sent home goalkeeper Salvatore Sirigu, defender Mattia Cassani and midfielder Andrea Cossu upon announcing his final 23-man team Tuesday.

Midfielder Mauro Camoranesi remained in the squad despite injuring his left knee during training Tuesday.

Lippi did not offer any immediate explanation for his choices. He was due to meet with reporters Wednesday.

"Didn't make it, but I have no regrets," Rossi wrote on Twitter. "Worked hard and showed what I could do. I guess the coach had other plans. Good luck Italy."

Rossi was born in New Jersey to Italian parents and has dual citizenship. He played well for Italy at last year's Confederations Cup, scoring twice in the opener against the United States, but struggled during the second half of this season with his Spanish club Villarreal.

"Can't wait to go back home to my family now!!" Rossi wrote. "Gonna enjoy a beautiful summer."

Borriello scored 14 goals for AC Milan this season but plays center forward, a position where Lippi prefers Alberto Gilardino, Vincenzo Iaquinta and Giampaolo Pazzini.

Team physician Enrico Castellacci said Tuesday that tests revealed no tears in Camoranesi's meniscus, adding that "he should be back in a few days. ... We're hoping to get him back for the first game against Paraguay."

Italy opens the World Cup against Paraguay on June 14.

Camoranesi will likely miss friendlies this week against Mexico and Switzerland.

Nine players remain from the team that won the World Cup four years ago in Germany: Gianluigi Buffon, Fabio Cannavaro, Gianluca Zambrotta, Camoranesi, Daniele De Rossi, Gennaro Gattuso, Andrea Pirlo, Alberto Gilardino and Vincenzo Iaquinta.

Fabio Grosso, the left back who converted the decisive penalty kick in the final against France four years ago, had already been cut two weeks ago after being named to the preliminary 30-man squad.

Lippi never even considered picking Antonio Cassano, the talented but temperamental Sampdoria forward, or Mario Balotelli, the controversial 18-year-old Inter Milan striker.

Italy has been training in Sestriere at 2,035 meters (6,670 feet) since May 23 and will depart for South Africa on June 8.

The roster:

Goalkeepers: Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus), Morgan De Sanctis (Napoli), Federico Marchetti (Cagliari).

Defenders: Salvatore Bocchetti (Genoa), Leonardo Bonucci (Bari), Fabio Cannavaro (Juventus), Giorgio Chiellini (Juventus), Domenico Criscito (Genoa), Christian Maggio (Napoli), Gianluca Zambrotta (AC Milan).

Midfielders: Mauro Camoranesi (Juventus), Daniele De Rossi (AS Roma), Gennaro Gattuso (AC Milan), Claudio Marchisio (Juventus), Riccardo Montolivo (Fiorentina), Angelo Palombo (Sampdoria), Simone Pepe (Udinese), Andrea Pirlo (AC Milan).

Forwards: Antonio Di Natale (Udinese), Alberto Gilardino (Fiorentina), Vincenzo Iaquinta (Juventus), Giampaolo Pazzini (Sampdoria), Fabio Quagliarella (Napoli).

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.