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Andrea Pirlo on "Gli Azzuri"

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Andrea Pirlo on Italian team
  • Pirlo believes Spain have the best chance of lifting the World Cup this summer
  • Gennaro Gattuso is the most passionate player in the Italian national team
  • Pirlo believes Ivory Coast are full of talent and may be a surprise in South Africa

CNN caught up with Italian midfield legend Andrea Pirlo who gave us his insight into the World Cup holders and made his predictions for this summer's tournament in South Africa.

Describe Italy's coach Marcello Lippi:

He is serious but just when you have to work or when he has to deal with the press. With the players he is able to joke around and create a good atmosphere. He is a delightful person and a great coach.

Are Italy too old to win the World Cup again?

There are so many players with experience, I would say we are experienced, not old. And considering we have played together at the highest level for a long time we can go far at the World Cup.

Who impressed you the most during qualifying?

Spain and Germany -- Spain are the team that has been playing better. They are amongst the favorites.

Who can be the surprise package?

I like the Ivory Coast. They did not play particularly well at the Africa Cup of Nations but they are full of talent.

Who is the most passionate player?

[Gennaro] Gattuso, who shows his passion in the way he plays and for sure also [Gianluigi] Buffon and [Fabio] Cannavarro.

Who plays the most practical jokes?

Me, [Daniele] De Rossi and Gattuso. There's enough understanding between veterans to do that.

Who is the most vain guy on the team?

[Gianluca] Zambrotta is that kind of guy. He uses a lot of cream and gels. He would like to be always perfect but he is not able to be!

And who is the last one on the bus?

That is easy [Mauro] Camoranesi -- if there is someone missing on the bus, in the briefings it is always the same guy -- Camoranesi.