Ryan Ross Date:8th July 2014 at 4:38pm
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Cesare Prandelli has thanked the FIGC for their support and expressed his pride at having led the side during his four years in charge of the national team, whilst giving a press conference ahead of his introduction as the new coach of Turkish club side Galatasaray.

In the form of an open letter to the Italian people Prandelli said, “So many things happen in four years. You meet so many people and create so many bonds during the construction of a project.

“I would like to thank each and every one of those people who have accompanied me, advised me and supported me in my journey. It isn’t possible [to thank everyone] because there are so many.

“I will do it with these few lines. It has been a privilege to work with you and I will always be proud of it.

“I know how much love and passion you have dedicated to the Azzurri shirt.

“I must give particular thanks to the president Giancarlo Abete, a key figure in this four-year tenure. He always knew how to say the right things to me at the right moments.

“I hope that our experience, both the positives and the negatives, can be a starting point in order for football in our country to earn the dignity and respect it deserves.”

Under Prandelli’s leadership Italy qualified for and reached the final of the European Championships in 2012, before disappointing at this summer’s World Cup where they were eliminated at the group stage after losing against Costa Rica and Uruguay in subsequent games.

Follow Ryan Ross on Twitter: @rross11