Leonardo Bonucci believes English football is braver than Italian as they ‘discover new talents and have no fear to make them play.’
The Azzurri meet the Three Lions in a Nations League Group stage game at San Siro tomorrow.
They collected a 0-0 draw in the first leg game in June in their first meeting after the Euro 2020 Final last year.
“Tomorrow’s game is crucial for us, it will make us understand where we are. We’ll learn where we have to improve. There isn’t a better game. We’ll have to beware of their stars, they have players who can win the game in a moment,” Bonucci said at a press conference.
The Italy captain has been criticised lately, as most of his Juventus teammates, after a poor start to the season.
He was benched in the last Serie A game against Monza, with Max Allegri’s assistant Marco Landucci claiming that the veteran was snubbed because of a tactical choice.
The decision has raised questions over Bonucci’s position inside the dressing room and whether he is a true leader.
“I am always myself, whether things go well or bad. I’ve done everything throughout my career by being myself,” the defender said.
“What’s important is to be aware of the fact that I’ve always given everything for the team and me.
“My career has always been like this. Nothing worries me, I’ve lived worse moments in my life, I am not concerned.
“I don’t think about World Cup 2026,” he continued. “It’s not my target, by objective is to stay here until I can and help the CT.”
Should Italy have a more united environment around them?
“Surely, it would help. In football and life, people have short-term memory and always focus on what doesn’t work.
“We must remember the emotions of when things were running smoothly. I hope fans will motivate us tomorrow, giving us a sense of belonging. It will help us win against a team we already beat at the Euros.”
What does he make of England and Tottenham striker Kane?
“We’ve faced Kane many times, he is one of the best strikers in the world and we’ve studied the new strikers these days,” said Bonucci.
“Surely, England are advantaged because they continuously discover new talents and have the courage to make them play.”
Gigio Donnarumma will return to San Siro for the second time since he left Milan and Bonucci warns fans who think about going to the game to boo the Azzurri’s goalkeeper.
“Those who boo a national team player are brainless. At that moment, a player represents the country,” he said.
“I don’t see why Donnarumma should be booed. He made a choice and he won’t be the last one to be booed. We must improve culturally; tomorrow, we expect motivated fans at San Siro.”