Italy striker Rossi happy to return to fray

May 4, 7:55 AM

ROME - Italy and Fiorentina striker Giuseppe Rossi boosted his World Cup selection hopes after returning to action in the Italian Cup final on Saturday.

Rossi, who previously missed two years of his career due to injury, ended a four-month injury lay-off when he came on for the final 20 minutes of Fiorentina's 3-1 Cup defeat to Napoli at Rome's Olympic Stadium.

He will now battle to regain full fitness in the final Serie A games of the season in the hope of making Cesare Prandelli's 23-man squad for the World Cup in June.

"I feel good, very happy to have returned but obviously disappointed with the result," Rossi told AFP.

Rossi had little time to impress Prandelli, who was in the stadium, but had club coach Vincenzo Montella purring after the game.

"He's doing well. He's lacking some rhythm but I saw him going in for tackles and that's a sign that he has no fear," said Montella.

Having made his return for Fiorentina at the start of the season following a lengthy period on the sidelines, Rossi raced into the lead of the Serie A scoring charts, netting 14 times in just 18 games, before his progress was stopped when he suffered a knee injury on January 5.

He is one of several strikers, including Serie A top scorer Ciro Immobile, hoping to partner striker Mario Balotelli in Brazil.

May 6, 3:12 PM

VIDEO: Fiorentina striker Rossi scores 1st goal since return from knee injury

May 6, 3:12 PM

Both Fiorentina and Italy received a big boost Tuesday, as striker Giuseppe Rossi got back on the scoresheet in his first league appearance since recovering from a knee injury that had kept him out of action since January.

Rossi found the back of the net in a thrilling 4-3 loss to Sassuolo.

Rossi, who was a certainty to be included in Italy's World Cup squad prior to missing four months after suffering yet another serious knee injury, has now scored 15 goals in 19 league matches this season.

Italian manager Cesare Prandelli has always favored the diminutive striker as a partner to Mario Balotelli in attack, and a strong finish to the season could see Rossi back in the fold - which would be a massive boost to the squad.

Apr 30, 1:58 PM

Rossi boost for Italy and Fiorentina ahead of Cup final

Apr 30, 1:58 PM

MILAN - Fiorentina striker Giuseppe Rossi could return to the squad in time for the Italian Cup final on Saturday in what would also prove a timely boost for Italy's World Cup campaign.

Rossi only returned for Fiorentina at the start of the season following a lengthy recovery from a knee injury, only to pick up a fresh injury in January.

The Fiorentina striker, who had scored a league-leading tally of 14 goals in 18 games before being sidelined, has been given the all-clear by club medical staff, according to reports in Italy.

However Fiorentina have yet to say whether Rossi or German striker Mario Gomez, who is also recovering from a slight knock to his knee, will be fit in time for Saturday's clash against Napoli in Rome.

Fiorentina will be bidding for their seventh Cup and first since 2001, but coach Vincenzo Montella has injury concerns elsewhere.

Reports suggest goalkeeper Neto (finger) and forwards Borja Valero (knee) and Gonzalo Rodriguez (tonsilitis) are all in a race against time to be fit for Saturday when 28,000 Fiorentina fans are set to descend on the Olympic Stadium.

"He (Neto) is in pain but we have enough time to get him fit," said club doctor Paolo Manetti.

Manetti added: "From a clinical and medical point of view, Giuseppe (Rossi) is fit for selection. In training he's been put through his paces and has basically recovered."

The team doctor said Gomez's selection would come down to Montella.

"The latest scan has shown a slight improvement.... and the player has been doing what he has to this week to be ready in time for Saturday."

Rodriguez, meanwhile, said: "We aim to bring the trophy back to Florence. Napoli are strong and they're the favourites, but we're going to Roma to give our everything and try to win this for our fans."

Asked about Rossi, former Villarreal striker Rodriguez said: "I think he's looking really good and he wants to play."

Apr 24, 1:01 PM

Giuseppe Rossi 'ready for World Cup' according to agent

Apr 24, 1:01 PM

If Giuseppe Rossi’s agent is to be believed, his client is ready compete in the World Cup. 

The Fiorentina striker suffered a knee ligament injury on Jan. 5, and was thought to have no hope of competing for Italy in Brazil at the time. Previously, Rossi had suffered two serious knee injuries. 

When there's a will, there's a way. 

'Pepito' returned to full training this week, but he isn't expected to be back in the Fiorentina lineup immediately. 

“Pepito has completely recovered, so now it’s just an issue of how he feels,” his agent Andrea Pastorello told Lady Radio, via Football Italia

“Could he be on the field against Bologna on Saturday? It’s possible, but I doubt it. We can also rule out the chance of starting the Coppa Italia Final on May 3."

However, Pastorello believes Rossi will be ready for the World Cup should national team coach Cesare Prandelli select him. 

“His confidence is really high and he’s happy. The player is healthy and ready for the World Cup. Now it’s up to Cesare Prandelli to decide."

“We worked very hard to get to this point and we are calm.”

Jan 11, 3:34 PM

Rossi injury more severe than first thought

Jan 11, 3:34 PM

Fiorentina forward Giuseppe Rossi could miss more time than originally thought according to the club.  

Initial reports indicated the 26-year-old only suffered a sprain to his right knee. Rossi's agent believed his client could be back in six-to-seven weeks. It appears that was incorrect. 

Fiorentina is now reporting medical personnel have discovered "a stress to the anterior cruciate ligament previously operated on," according to the BBC

Rossi missed 18 months after tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee in October 2011. 

Jan 7, 8:52 AM

Agent believes Rossi could be back in six to seven weeks

Jan 7, 8:52 AM

Either Giuseppe Rossi’s agent is extremely optimistic or we have a minor miracle on our hands. 

A right knee injury suffered against Livorno on Sunday was expected to keep Rossi out for several months after tests were conducted on Monday, but that may not be the case according to Rossi's agent Federico Pastorello. 

It looks like a sprain with damage to the collateral ligament. We really got away with this one,” wrote Pastorello on Twitter, according to Football Italia

“In six or seven weeks he could be back on the pitch.”

A more definitive timeline on Rossi's return from injury will be available after the Fiorentina striker meets with a specialist in the United States.

Jan 6, 8:32 AM

World Cup hope Rossi suffers ligament damage

Jan 6, 8:32 AM

MILAN, Jan 06, 2014 - Italy striker Giuseppe Rossi has suffered ligament damage to his troublesome right knee but not a rupture of the cruciate as feared, his Serie A club Fiorentina announced on Monday.

Rossi's World Cup hopes had been thrown into turmoil on Sunday as he limped off in the pitch in the 71st minute following a foul by Liandro Rinaudo in a 1-0 win over Livorno.

The 26-year-old suffered a "second degree injury of the right anterior ligament," his team confirmed after he underwent tests on Monday.

Rossi only returned to action this season following a lengthy lay-off because of injuries to the same knee but has hit 14 goals to become Serie A's top scorer and is firmly in the World Cup plans of Italy coach Cesare Prandelli.

"We're more optimistic," his agent Andrea Pastorello said as Rossi left the hospital on crutches with a thin smile on his lips as he was greeted by a crowd of fans.

Tests confirmed a sprain and the player nevertheless risks being sidelined for several months.

He will now travel to Vail, Colorado to be examined by Professor Richard Steadman, the surgeon who operated on him before.

Fiorentina had feared the worst for Rossi, who suffered separate injuries to the same right knee in October 2011 and April 2012, and who has undergone several knee operations in recent years.

The injuries cost him 23 months away between November 2011 and October 2013 and deprived him from playing at Euro 2012 where Italy were beaten by Spain in the final.

Jan 5, 3:06 PM

Montella worried Rossi's knee injury is serious

Jan 5, 3:06 PM

Fiorentina manager Vincenzo Montella is concerned the knee injury sustained by forward Giuseppe Rossi versus Livorno is quite serious. 

“We are all worried about Rossi. Tomorrow there will be the necessary medical tests,” Montella told Sky Sport Italia, according to Football Italia

Rossi spent two years recovering from knee injuries and has been one of the feel good stories in Serie A this season.

Speculation indicates the injury could be a knee sprain with potential for ligament damage. 

Montella was furious with Livorno defender Leandro Rinaudo, the player on the other end of the tackle that hobbled Rossi. 

“We are above all sad for his state of mind," he said. "It’s a real shame, as the foul seemed to be intentional and the player behind it didn’t even apologise. Usually when someone commits a foul like that you say sorry, as there was no way Rinaudo was going to get that ball.”

Goal International deputy editor Carlo Garganese believes the foul was deliberate as well. 

Carganese also reports it's suspected Rossi may have torn his cruciate ligament for the third time, ending his chances of playing in the 2014 World Cup and possibly, ending his career in general.