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The 37-year-old insists he has accepted Cesare Prandelli's decision not to take him to Brazil and has backed Ciro Immobile to do well against Uruguay

Former Italy striker Luca Toni has insisted he has no regrets about not going to the World Cup with his nation.

Toni's 21 goals in 35 games last season for Hellas Verona saw the 37-year-old linked with a return to the Azzurri squad – despite his absence from the national team for the last five years.

The veteran forward’s impressive form for his club side last term was only bettered by Torino's 24-year-old striker, Ciro Immobile, who scored one more than Toni in Serie A.

Toni – who was the symbol of Italy’s 2006 World Cup triumph – admitted that while it was tough to watch his nation lose 1-0 to Costa Rica, he was not spending his days thinking about not being called up to Cesare Prandelli’s 23-man squad.

When asked about if he had received messages following Italy's defeat in Recife, Toni told TuttoSport: "Some arrived. And if I think about the fact that for Germany, Klose scored [against Ghana]. He is more or less my age.

“[But] the choices have been made now: it is useless to think about it.”

After beating England 2-1 in their opening Group D match, Italy’s loss to Costa Rica means that they have to avoid defeat against Uruguay in Natal on June 24 to qualify for the knockout stages.

And following Prandelli's decision to start Mario Balotelli up front against Costa Rica, Toni backed the Italy coach to make a change against Oscar Tabarez’s men with Immobile partnering the AC Milan striker.

"Ciro is trustworthy – he is the top scorer in the league. I can see him working well in tandem with Balotelli,” he said.
 

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