Attacking midfielder Antonio Candreva has represented his country at one level or another since turning professional in 2004, progressing through Italy's youth teams before making his senior debut in 2009. The 26-year-old's preferred position is tucked in behind a striker, but since joining Lazio in January last year he has been used effectively on the flanks as well, not least thanks to his pace and dribbling ability. Right-footed, he also boasts a knack for spectacular goals from distance.

 

Originally from Rome, he gained his grounding in the game at Ternana, where he also made his first-team debut, before signing for Udinese in 2007. From there, he began a series of loan spells, spending two seasons at Livorno, six months at Juventus and a year apiece at Parma and Cesena.

 

Despite the regular change of scenery, he was awarded a maiden Italy cap by Marcello Lippi on 14 November 2009, featuring in a goalless draw against the Netherlands at the age of 22. Included in a preliminary squad for the 2010 FIFA World Cup™, he eventually missed the cut for South Africa along with Fabio Grosso.  

 

Three years after making his international bow, Candreva was selected by Cesare Prandelli for the Brazil 2014 qualifier against Armenia on 12 October 2012, which Italy won 3-1. He has now represented La Nazionale seven times in total, as of May this year, and contested Italy's most recent qualifier on 26 March, a 2-0 victory against Malta.