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After nearly seeing his career ended by ligament damage to his right knee, the Italy international is now hoping to finally realise his undoubted star potential

Fiorentina forward Giuseppe Rossi says that he is determined to become an even better player than he was before his knee problems.

The Italy international tore ligaments in his right knee while playing for Villarreal in October 2011 before suffering a recurrence of the problem just six months later, putting his top-flight career in jeopardy.

However, after a subsequent move to Fiorentina, he made his return to competitive action at the tail-end of last season, before kicking off the new campaign in style by netting the opener in a 2-1 win over Catania on Monday.

"I'm pleased with the goal and the group's victory, because it was a hard-fought win against a great team," Rossi is quoted as saying by Gazzetta dello Sport.

"It's all very nice, as my mother and my family were in the stands. It's been a great night.  I am happy, it is a great feeling but my thoughts go out to my dad [who passed away last year after a lengthy battle with illness].

"Every Sunday I will try to improve, but I'm obviously not 100 per cent yet. But I'm trying to get back to what I was before, and even better."

With a fully-fit Rossi working in tandem with star summer signing Mario Gomez, there are those that believe that Vincenzo Montella's men could challenge for the Serie A title this year.

However, the American-born forward insists that he is focused solely on la Viola's Europa League qualifier at present.

"A Viola Scudetto? I'm not thinking about that," Rossi said. "My mind is now on Grasshoppers."

Fiorentina take a 2-1 lead into their second-leg clash with the Swiss side at the Artemio Franchi on Friday night.

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