Hindsight is an uncertain creature. But who knows how Italy's game against Egypt would have gone if Antonio Cassano had been there to invent something in or around the penalty area. It was, after all, a match when the World Champions demonstrated a distinct lack of imagination in their attacking play.
The boy from Bari's old town would have surely given the African champions something extra to think about, and this was confirmed by Brazil 'keeper Julio Cesar when he spoke in the pre-match press conference this afternoon.
“Luckily for us, Cassano won’t be there tomorrow night,” the Inter goalkeeper said gleefully.
“Antonio is one of my favourite players. He is almost impossible to read and has a wealth of fantasy.”
Despite two of the world’s finest keepers going head-to-head tomorrow night, the Brazilian stopper was keen to play down the talk of any rivalry between the two number one's and focussed solely on the possible outcome of the game.
“I only care about the match," he insisted.
"It makes no difference if someone says Buffon is the best or someone else says I am. All that matters is the match and, regardless of the Egypt result, we must play to win.”
Stefano Federici, Goal.com