Juventus striker Fabio Quagliarella has praised Italian football for recovering from an exodus of stars in 2012, ahead of his team's match against fierce rivals Inter next Saturday.
Despite the difficulties suffered by Andrea Stramaccioni's men this season, the former Napoli man has warned his team-mates that their next opponents will still pose a considerable threat, as has the rest of Serie A this term.
"It's a strange league," the Italy international told Juventus' official website.
"Important figures like [Alessandro] Del Piero, [Zlatan] Ibrahimovic and Thiago Silva may have departed, but it’s great to see teams like Napoli, Fiorentina and Roma all proving capable of playing spectacular football on the pitch.
"Inter are in form and I’m expecting a really great match. We’ll be facing a team who managed to overturn a negative result against Tottenham.
"I’m sorry they didn’t qualify, it’s always a shame when an Italian team gets knocked out of a continental competition."
Turning his attention back to the Bianconeri's own European commitments as they prepare to face Bayern Munich on the back of the derby, Quagliarella continued: "It will be a fantastic contest.
"They’ve got great players in attack, so once again, our defence will have to be on top form. As we’ve done everywhere though, we’ll still go there to play our game and score goals.
"Obviously, I would like to be the one to score, but what counts is that the team can get a result.”