Italy Coach Cesare Prandelli: Luca Cigarini Is Long-Term Replacement For Andrea Pirlo

Azzurri coach Cesare Prandelli believes Luca Cigarini is the natural successor to Andrea Pirlo.
Italy coach Cesare Prandelli is of the opinion that midfielder Luca Cigarini is the natural successor to Andrea Pirlo as the Azzurri’s playmaker.

The 24-year-old, who moved on loan from Napoli to Primera Division side Sevilla during the summer, has been pinpointed as the man to pull the strings in the centre of the pitch once the Milan star’s days in the national side come to an end.

Speaking in the wake of Italy’s battling 2-1 win over Estonia to give them a positive start to their Euro 2012 qualifying campaign, Prandelli stated, “Who can be the heir of [Andrea] Pirlo? [Luca] Cigarini. During my time at Parma, we used to call him ‘the professor’. In Spain, we will grow a lot but obviously I will watch him closely.

“In addition to his technical skills, he has great professional skills.”

Sevilla have the opportunity to secure Cigarini at the end of the season for a fee in the region of €8 million if he performs well in La Liga in the season ahead.

Follow on . Get the latest football news direct... Check out's  page; be part of the best football fan community in the world!