Paolo Di Canio believes that England's fitness will betray them in Sunday night's Euro 2012 quarterfinal clash with Italy and claims that John Terry will prove particularly vulnerable in the closing stages of the game.
The Swindon boss suspects that Roy Hodgson's men will pay the price for another punishing Premier League campaign and is hoping that Azzurri boss Cesare Prandelli selects Antonio Di Natale ahead of Mario Balotelli because the Udinese man is more likely to sap their opponents' energy.
"England cannot endure a high pace to the game after a grueling season and this can be an advantage [for Italy]," Di Canio told Tuttosport.
"Terry will especially struggle if we cut up the midfield with good movement. So, I would rather see Di Natale [up front]. England will have heart, passion and desire. But we have more imagination, with [Antonio] Cassano and [Andrea] Pirlo."
Di Canio, though, freely admits that England is not without its own attacking threat and he is particularly concerned about just how Leonardo Bonucci will cope with Manchester United duo Danny Welbeck and Wayne Rooney.
"The individual one-on-ones will be difficult for Bonucci," he conceded. "Welbeck and Rooney are deadly in the final third. They know each other and they combine well.
"[Steven] Gerrard is the usual driving force. He does not have any great pace any more but can still make the difference, as he did against Sweden. It will be a good battle of brains between him and Pirlo."
Italy's clash with England in Kiev will get underway at 2:45 p.m. ET.
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