Clubs: Genoa CFC, Juventus, Genoa CFC, FC Zenit
• Left the south of Italy for the north in his early teens to launch his career with Genoa CFC and made his Serie B debut at 16 before establishing himself as a regular in central defence four years later following a two-year spell as a youth player at Juventus.
• Joined the Juventus first team in 2007/08 following the club's return to Serie A and made his top-flight debut in a 5-1 win against AS Livorno Calcio on 25 August 2007, but failed to command a regular berth in Claudio Ranieri's side and was released back to Genoa on loan midway through the campaign.
• Prospered at Genoa as a left-back, making his UEFA club competition debut in the 2009/10 UEFA Europa League and also breaking into the senior Italy squad that season.
• Having represented Italy at the UEFA European Under-21 Championship finals of 2007 and 2009 and the 2008 Olympics in between, he made it four summer tournaments in a row by playing all three games for the Azzurri at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
• After 116 Serie A appearances and five goals for Genoa he left to join Italian coach Luciano Spalletti at Zenit for a fee of €11m; started all six UEFA Champions League group games for the Russian club as they advanced into the knockout phase.
• Called up to the Italy squad for UEFA EURO 2012, but was forced to drop out ahead of the tournament.
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