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The Juventus defender is still sidelined with a thigh injury sustained against Atalanta on the final day of the Serie A season and missed the Coppa Italia final as a result

ITALY
GROUP C
HOW THEY QUALIFIED
P
PTS
 ITALY 10 26
 ESTONIA
10 16
 SERBIA 10 15
 SLOVENIA 10 14
 NORTHERN IRELAND
10 9
 FAROE ISLANDS
10 4

Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini says that he has no intention of allowing an injury to ruin his hopes of participating in Euro 2012.

The versatile Juventus centre-back suffered a minor thigh injury in his club's final game of the Serie A season, against Atalanta, and was ruled out of action for 20 days.

There are still concerns over whether Chiellini will be fully fit for the Azzurri's tournament opener against Spain on June 10 but he was able to offer a positive injury update on Wednesday.

"I think I'll recover for the Euros," the 27-year-old Pisa native told reporters. "I have already started running again.

"I've been waiting two years for this tournament and I wouldn't miss it for the world. On the day of the injury I was really disappointed, but soon after, I calmed down."

Chiellini's injury has prevented him from training with Pescara youngster Marco Verratti, a surprise inclusion in Italy's preliminary squad for Poland and Ukraine, but has been impressed by what he has seen from the reported Juve target.

"Verratti is definitely a young man with great prospects," he enthused. "He would do well in coming to Turin. He would only grow and improve."

Chiellini, who arrived in Turin from Fiorentina in 2005, has been capped 50 times by the Azzurri.

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