Cesena midfielder Marco Parolo says he is surprised after receiving a call-up to the Italian national team.
The 25-year-old is joining team-mate Davide Santon, who has also been named by Azzurri coach Cesare Prandelli for the matches against Slovenia and Ukraine.
"Up until two days ago, I did not think it was even a possibility. For me, it is a dream that has slowly come true after a lot of hard work and faith in me," Parolo told Sportal.
"I want to thank my team-mates who have helped me get to this points - even those from last season. I thank the club, especially president [Igor] Campedelli who has always believed in me.
"I cannot forget the coach [Massimo] Ficcadento and [former coach Pierpaolo] Bisoli, as well as team manager Fiorenzo Treossi, Gabriele Valentini and all of the staff," he added.
Santon wanted to thank the Seahorses for giving him a chance at the club, after going on loan to the Bianconeri during the winter transfer window.
"I am very happy to be called up to the national team. I thank Prandelli for the trust shown in me, but also Cesena, who has allowed me to find the necessary consistency in order to aim for the national team," Santon concluded.
Italy take on Slovenia on March 25 and Ukraine four days later.