Italy forward, Mario Balotelli, insists England are no ‘real rivals’ for Italy and he doesn’t expect much from the Three Lions in Brazil.
The Azurri have won four World Cups, the latest in 2006, while England have only won the trophy in 1966.
Balotelli doesn’t believe the current England squad has enough experience to reach far at this year's tournament.
"I don't look at England as a team that can win the World Cup. They have some good players, but they are no real rivals for Italy," said Balotelli as quoted by the Daily Mail.
"I am not saying that Italy are favourites, but we have the mentality and experienced players to surprise people. I don't think England have that.
"We have players who have won the World Cup. I don't think England have a player who knows what it is like to play past the quarter-final.”
Italy will face England in the opening game of Group D and Balotelli expects his country to start with a victory into the tournament.
"In the opening game, we have to respect England because it is important to get off to a good start.
"They have maybe two or three players who can hurt us, but we feel well prepared for the tournament and expect to start off with a win."
Italy and England are joined by Uruguay and Costa Rica in Group D.
Italy or England, which nation will go further in Brazil? Have your say in the comment section below.