Cassano: Italy doesn't fear anybody

The Milan attacker reveled in the Azzurri's hard-fought win over Ireland and warned that Cesare Prandelli's side is ready to welcome any opponent in the knockout stages.
Antonio Cassano has voiced his delight with Italy's qualification for the quarterfinals of Euro 2012, and added that the Azzurri are not afraid of any opponent.
Alex Mott | Italy Expert

Italy is likely to meet France in the quarterfinals of Euro 2012, and will be confident of victory over Les Bleus, if recent history is anything to go by. The team's overall record against the French shows 19 wins, 10 draws and eight losses, including, most memorably, the victory in the 2006 World Cup final.

The two sides also met in the group stage of Euro 2008. An Andrea Pirlo penalty and a second-half strike from Daniele De Rossi was enough to send a Thierry Henry-led France side home.

The 2006 World Cup winner recorded a hard-fought 2-0 triumph over Republic of Ireland in its final Group C game to book a ticket for the last eight, and the AC Milan attacker was happy that his side had to work for the win.

"We don't fear anyone. The important thing was to qualify, and now the knockout stages start and we are ready to face anybody," Cassano was quoted as saying on the official UEFA website. "The tough victories are the best ones. The most important thing was to get through the group stage.

"I couldn't wait for the final whistle in the other match [Croatia 0-1 Spain], but I was very happy when the game finally ended."

Italy will lock horns with the winner of Group D in its quarterfinal clash on June 24.

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