Italy coach Cesare Prandelli can welcome back Claudio Marchisio and Ignazio Abate for the 2014 World Cup qualifier against Malta after the pair missed the 2-2 friendly draw with Brazil on Thursday.
Abate is vying with Napoli's Christian Maggio for the right-back role, whilst Marchisio is expected to come into the midfield in place of the suspended Daniele De Rossi. Pablo Daniel Osvaldo also misses out through suspension, meaning that Stephan El Shaarawy could partner his AC Milan team-mate Mario Balotelli up front.
Mattia De Sciglio is expected to maintain his spot at left-back after impressing on his international debut, whilst Giorgio Chiellini is also pushing for a start. Gianluigi Buffon is set for his 126th Azzurri cap between the sticks and Alessandro Florenzi has joined the squad from the Under-21 set-up.
Malta coach Pietro Ghedin could be tempted to make changes to the side which were crushed 6-0 by Bulgaria on Friday evening.
Roderick Briffa and Paul Fenech were both substituted in that defeat and their replacements Ryan Camilleri and Rowen Muscat could be in line for starting berths.
Michael Mifsud, Malta's leading all-time goalscorer with 36 goals, is once again set to lead the front line and is looking for his first goal in qualifying.
Milan striker Mario Balotelli (pictured, right), who scored Italy's equaliser in Thursday's 2-2 draw with Brazil, has notched eight goals in eight games for club and country in 2013.
Malta are managed by Pietro Ghedin, who between 1996-2004, was the assistant coach of the Italian national team.
Italy have played the archipelago nation on five occasions, winning all the ties by a combined score of 17-2.
In the reverse fixture back in September, the Azzurri emerged 2-0 winners courtesy of goals from Mattia Destro and Federico Peluso. However, both players have been omitted from Prandelli's squad selection this time around.
Malta are yet to register a point in 2014 World Cup qualifying, having lost all four of their opening group matches and scoring a solitary goal in the process.
In the most recent Fifa world rankings, Italy are ranked fifth and Malta 147th.
|Coach: P. Ghedin|
for C. Failla 82'
for M. Mifsud 88'
|Bruce critcises Foy over ´clear-cut penalty´|
|Hyypia calls for more of the same|
|UEFA Champions League Preview: Marseille v Borussia Dortmund|
|Premier League: Swansea City 1 Hull City 1|
|Turkish Super Lig Wrap: Fenerbahce win again as Kasimpasa, Besiktas falter|
|Michel: Olympiacos deserve to qualify|
|Blanc ready for ´great challenge´ against Benfica|
|Ancelotti plays down talk of Di Maria spat|
|Bayern game is important, insists Pellegrini|
|UEFA Champions League Preview: Austria Vienna v Zenit St Petersburg|
|Juve will not be affected by Pirlo absence, says Conte|
|Dalman pledges Mackay support|
|Mancini expects Sneijder to play|
|UEFA Champions League Preview: Schalke v Basel|
|Celtic ban 128 fans after crowd trouble|
|UEFA Champions League Preview: Atletico Madrid v Porto|
|Moyes takes responsibility for United setbacks|
|Clarke vows to improve West Brom fortunes|
|Jesus calls for Benfica focus|
|Song settled at Barcelona|
|Howard: Everton more confident than ever|
|Guardiola aiming for maximum points|
|Jarvis calls for fighting spirit at West Ham|
|Stekelenburg targets Everton scalp|
|Messi, Ronaldo, Ribery on Ballon d´Or shortlist|
|Van der Vaart set for return|
|Expert urges ´careful´ approach over match-fixing|
|Ronaldo returns to Real Madrid squad|
|Pardew warns of ´dangerous´ Newcastle|
|Barker appointed Portsmouth boss|
|Assaidi remains hopeful of Liverpool future|
|Bayern will need to be at their best, says Kroos|
|UEFA Champions League Preview: Barcelona v Celtic|
|Tricky run does not concern Arsenal, Mertesacker insists|
|Blackburn striker Campbell arrested in match-fixing probe|
|UEFA Champions League Preview: Milan v Ajax|
|Cahill: Chelsea have to stop mistakes|
|Paranaense slam ´barbaric events´ in Vasco clash|
|Rodgers endorses Coutinho´s World Cup chances|
|Liga MX Wrap: Leon, America into final|
|Ranieri delighted with narrow win|
|Colombia Primera A Wrap: Atletico Nacional win again|
|Uruguay Primera Division Wrap: Tight title race continues|
|Liga del Futbol Profesional Boliviano Wrap: Bolivar stay top|
|Chile Primera Division Wrap: Universidad Catolica claim top spot|
|Ecuador Primera A Wrap: Champions Emelec finish with a win|
|Copa del Rey Wrap: Osasuna, Espanyol claim comeback draws|
|Barkley can be England´s ´diamond´, says Martinez|
|Ligue 1 Wrap: Monaco into second with win, Lille beaten|
|Mazzarri adamant Inter were denied ´clear´ penalty|
|Brazil Serie A Wrap: Fluminense, Vasco relegated as violence mars final weekend|
|Serie A Wrap: Roma back on track, Inter held at home|
|Primeira Liga Wrap: Sporting move top, Olhanense lose again|
|Serie A: Inter 3 Parma 3|
|Peru Primera Division: Real Garcilaso 3 Universitario 2|
|Fan clashes mar Brazilian league fixture|
|Bundesliga Wrap: Wolfsburg win again, Hertha up to seventh|
|Wenger praises Everton performance|
|Martinez delighted with Everton display|
|Eredivisie Wrap: Feyenoord stay in touch with top three, Groningen lose at home|
|UEFA Champions League Preview: Benfica v Paris Saint-Germain|
|Premier League: Arsenal 1 Everton 1|
|UEFA Champions League Preview: Bayern Munich v Manchester City|
|Meulensteen confident over Berbatov future|
|Arsenal to face Tottenham in FA Cup third round|
|Lambert disappointed with refereeing decisions|
|Russian Premier League Wrap: Zenit back on top, Spartak close the gap|
|Leonardo: PSG tried to sign Ronaldo|
|Cocu defiant despite heavy PSV defeat|
|Premier League: Fulham 2 Aston Villa 0|
|Garcia delighted as Roma back on form|
|Paulinho hails Tottenham resilience|
|UEFA Champions League Preview: Manchester United v Shakhtar Donetsk|
|Hughes sees Stoke progression|
|Marcelo tips Kaka for FIFA World Cup recall|
|Pochettino sticks to attacking philosophy|
|Milner bemoans City travel sickness|
|Laudrup looking for striker boost|
|Juve will not miss Pirlo, says Mancini|
|Poyet has own goal concerns|
|Coloccini: We have learnt from our mistakes|
|Buffon fires Hart a World Cup warning|
|Hughton urges Hooper service|
|Hyypia hails ´important´ win over Dortmund|
|Clarke frustrated with penalty decision|
|Moyes confident in Manchester United squad|
|Mourinho: Chelsea are in trouble|
|Six arrested in new match-fixing probe|
|A-League: Melbourne Victory 1 Newcastle Jets 2|
|Allardyce furious with Nolan indiscipline|
|Keller: Korb deserved a red card|
|Balotelli still confident despite late miss|
|Benitez bemoans errors, Guidolin thrilled with draw|
|No worries for Madrid after Copa del Rey draw|
|Son expected goal and victory against Dortmund|
|Paraguay Division Profesional Wrap: Cerro Porteno finish Clausura unbeaten|
|MLS Cup: Sporting Kansas City 1 Real Salt Lake 1 (7-6 on pens)|
|Guardiola thrilled with Bayern´s complete performance|
|Garcia focused on attractive football, Roma´s fans - not Juve|
|Copa del Rey Wrap: Real held, holders Atletico all but through|
|Primeira Liga Wrap: Martinez sends Porto top, Estoril see off Pacos|