- (Photo: Reuters/Tony Gentile)
The Italians will host the Czech Republic Tuesday at Juventus Stadium in Torino, Italy and will be fighting for a the title of first European team to qualify for next year's World Cup.
The Azzurri is currently seven points clear of Bulgaria at the top of Group C and three points would be enough to guarantee their spot in next year's tournament, should the Italians match Bulgaria's result against Malta.
Yet the Czech Republic is still not out of qualifying contention and can still make the World Cup should they earn a few positive results. The Czech Republic is currently just a point behind Bulgaria, who is in the qualification playoff spot, and is level on points with Armenia and Denmark. The Czech Republic missed out on the last World Cup and will be fighting not to miss out on Brazil next summer.
For the Czech Republic, trying to pick up points in Italy is a daunting task. As usual, the Czechs will go as far as no. 10 and Arsenal man Tomas Rosicky can take them. The creative midfielder will need help, of course, but he's without question this team's on-field leader.
Keeper and Chelsea man Petr Cech will look to give his side an edge opposite the other net minder, Gianluigi Buffon.
To encourage the Czech Republic, the Italians are facing injuries problems themselves. Defenders Luca Antonelli and Ignazio Abate are both unavailable and forward Lorenzo Insigne is in a doubt for the match.
On the other side, Riccardo Montolivo, Mario Balotelli and Pablo Osvaldo are all available again after suspensions and will likely be involved, while Manuel Pasqual and Lorenzo De Silvestri have been drafted into the squad to replace the injured full-backs.
Kick-off for the match is at 2:45 ET and can be watched online here.