Italy will attack - Conte

June 09, 2016
Italy coach Antonio Conte.

Antonio Conte assured Italy "will always play positive and attacking football" at Euro 2016.

"I think Italy have been on a growth process and I say that for the qualifiers too, when we started behind Croatia and went on to win the group," said Conte ahead of Monday's tournament opener with Belgium.

Conte has been hit hard by the loss of Marco Verratti, Claudio Marchisio and Riccardo Montolivo to injury in the Azzurri midfield.

"Our intention is to play positive football and that doesn't change despite the injuries, even if Verratti and Marchisio are very important players with a lot of international experience.

"We will try to cover these absences with a huge, almost obsessive, effort to work as a team. It is certainly an advantage that we can count on three or four Juventus players, who have been working together as a defensive unit for a long time.

"They help provide a solid foundation to build on. As I said, I always want to play positive and attacking football, but what counts the most is having balance all over the pitch."

Belgium are the first opponents on June 13 and are considered one of the favourites for the tournament itself.

"It is certainly a great challenge. We already faced them in a friendly and I have to say we played well, even if we lost 3-1. It will be tough, but perhaps it is better to start the tournament against such a strong team, so we have to be on it straight away."

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