Sat 27 November 2021 | 12:51

Cannavaro: Ronaldo is not as agile as he used to be

The Azzurri legend believes Italy have enough defensive resources to stop the Portuguese superstar.

Italy have been drawn with


, North Macedonia, and Turkey in their World Cup playoff group. This means only one of the four sides will play in the next year’s competition.

The Azzurri will face North Macedonia in their first battle before potentially meeting the winner of Turkey vs Portugal in the final round.

This is certainly not Italy’s favourite draw, but

Fabio Cannavaro

says the Azzurri can stop

Cristiano Ronaldo

and his teammates in the crucial playoff match.

“Italy have nothing to fear as we play as we know,”

Cannavaro told

La Gazzetta dello Sport


“Portugal are strong, but you need to beat anxiety in these games. Ronaldo would want to qualify for the World Cup, it’s the game he will live for.

“He keeps scoring goals, but Chiellini and Bonucci know his movements well and Cristiano is not as agile as he used to be some years ago and we could benefit from it.”

Leonardo Spinazzola

displayed impressive performances for Italy in their first three games of the Euro 2020 campaign. However, he was sidelined with a long-term injury that brought his European Championship campaign to an unfortunate end. 

Cannavaro hopes the Roma defender will be back in time for the playoffs.

“We’ll need to recover those players who were injured in November and add quality midfielders such as [Marco] Verratti or [Lorenzo] Pellegrini,”

Cannavaro added.

“Perhaps, Spinazzola will be ready in March.”

The upcoming Qatar World Cup might be Ronaldo's last chance to play in the tournament. The 36-year-old hopes to win the only missing piece of silverware in his trophy cabinet, with football fans excited to watch a new chapter of Ronaldo and Lionel Messi's rivalry in the competition.

source: SportMob

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