Lippi tells Cassano to wait

The coach of Republic of Ireland rivals Italy has said that Antonio Cassano will have to wait before finding out if he is to be included in his World Cup squad.

Cassano's Sampdoria beat Inter Milan 1-0 on Saturday to climb to the top of the Serie A standings, one point clear of Juventus.

"Sampdoria has started well," said Marcello Lippi. "They have important players and a good coach in Luigi Del Neri.

"Samp was a team that was improving and I am happy that they are first in the standings as I played at Sampdoria for 20 years."

One of the main reasons why Samp have won all but one of their six encounters this campaign has been the impressive form of Cassano.

While Cassano has not been scoring goals, he has created opportunities for his team-mates to find the back of the net.

When asked if Cassano will return to the national team, Lippi added: "Every player dreams of playing for the national team and so does he.

"But everyone must wait until June for my final call-up."

Local media and Azzurri fans have called for Lippi to get Cassano back in the national side.

Cassano was in Roberto Donadoni's Euro 2008 squad but ever since Lippi returned to guide the Azzurri, the playmaker has not featured for Italy.

Cassano does have a reputation for causing trouble on and off the pitch but has matured in his two seasons at Sampdoria.

The world champions need just one point against Ireland in the qualifier on October 10 to assure themselves a place in next year's top tournament in South Africa.

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