DUBAI // Paolo Maldini, the five-time European Cup winner, will line up alongside former teammates Franco Baresi and Alessandro Costacurta when the AC Milan Legends side compete in the first Emirates Airline Dubai Football Sevens next month. The three defenders proved pivotal in Italy's progression to the World Cup final in 1994 and they will be reunited at The Sevens between March 11 and 13 to represent Milan against the likes of England's Liverpool, Glasgow Rangers and Celtic from Scotland and Olympiakos of Greece in the legends tournament.
Maldini, 41, the former Milan captain, spent his entire career - an incredible 25 seasons - at the San Siro. He will be returning to the Emirates having played for Milan in a friendly with Germany's Hamburg in the Dubai Football Challenge last January. "It is very exciting to be going back to Dubai, my teammates and I are really looking forward to playing together again and taking on some greats of the game next month. I have no doubt it will be a great show," said the recently retired Maldini.
As well as a triumvirate of defensive talent, Milan Legends will also boast the attacking threat of four-time Serie A champion Daniel Massaro and Paolo Di Canio, the flamboyant forward. Massaro scored for the Azzuri against Mexico at the 1994 World Cup while Di Canio has opted to represent the team he played for between 1994 and 1996 rather than Celtic, who he moved to from Italy. They will be joined by European Super Cup winner Stefano Eranio, midfielders Angelo Carbone and Marco Simone, centre-half Pietro Vierchowod and goalkeeper Simone Braglia.
Emirates said yesterday that demand for places in the tournament had forced them to expand the current roster and accommodate two additional legends sides. Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea complete up the pool of eight teams. firstname.lastname@example.org