La Liga - Rossi slates Serie A

Thu, 24 Feb 14:56:00 2011

Villarreal striker Giuseppe Rossi believes Serie A has declined in standard as teams started to value physicality over technique.

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The US-born Rossi plays in Spain for Villarreal but had spells in Italy with Parma and has also experienced top-flight football in England with Manchester United and Newcastle.

And he is certain that the travails of the Italian national team in recent seasons are the price of the domestic game’s problems.

"In recent years Italian clubs have gone in search of more physical players and they are paying for it," Rossi said ahead of Villarreal’s Europa League last-32 second-leg with Napoli.

"Football has changed and the teams who win are those that keep the ball.

"(Italy coach) Cesare Prandelli is on the right track and is trying to make the changes needed."

All three Italian teams lost their home Champions League last-16 first legs in the past week, with Milan and Inter going down 1-0 to Bayern Munich and Tottenham and Roma losing 3-2 to Shakhtar Donetsk.

Villarreal and Napoli drew 0-0 in the first leg in Italy.

Follow live text commentary on these games this weekend: Atletico Madrid v Sevilla; Mallorca v Barcelona; Deportivo v Real Madrid; Santander v Villarreal; Athletic Bilbao v Valencia

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