England defender Gary Cahill claims there is no plan to stop Andrea Pirlo in the World Cup opener against Italy today.
The Three Lions take on Italy in the Amazon city of Manaus in a repeat of the Euro 2012 quarter-final, when Pirlo produced a man-of-the-match display before the Azzurri won on penalties.
Much has been made of how Roy Hodgso n’s men will try and handle Pirlo in the Group D clash on Saturday – but Cahill insists they will not give the 35-year-old playmaker special attention.
“I don’t think there is a masterplan,” said the Chelsea defender when asked about Pirlo’s threat. “We’re respectful of what he’s done and what a player he is but our message is about how we want to play and approach the game – we want to control the game.
“I think the key is to be organised and solid at the back, and to give our more creative players the ball to create opportunities. That’s the plan.”