Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri said the future of Italy's national team is bright after Nicolo Fagioli marked his first Serie A start with a goal in a crucial Derby d'Italia win over Inter.
Fagioli capped an outstanding Juventus counter-attack by beating Andre Onana with a deflected strike as the Bianconeri leapfrogged their rivals in the Serie A table with a 2-0 victory.
As well as making the points safe with his 84th-minute effort, Fagioli created two chances and completed a team-high 93 per cent of his passes, leaving Allegri enthused.
Asked whether Fagioli deserved an Italy call-up, Allegri hailed the 21-year-old and said Juventus' big-name absentees must compete with him and fellow youngster Fabio Miretti when they return.
"You have to ask [Roberto] Mancini," Allegri said. "One thing is certain, I believe that the national team has an important future with strong young players who need to grow, not only at Juve.
"There is a good pool to face things in the best way in the coming years.
"Whoever is out will have to run, because these kids run. Fagioli and Miretti must be left alone.
"Every now and then they will play less well, it is normal, but they must enjoy this moment in serenity."
At 21 years and 267 days old, Fagioli is the third-youngest midfielder to score for Juventus in a Derby d'Italia contest in Serie A, after Giacomo Neri in 1936 (20 years, 291 days) and Antonio Montico in 1955 (21 years, 115 days).
Meanwhile, Juventus have now won four consecutive league games without conceding, and Allegri hopes their improved run will breed additional confidence.
"Winning helps you win, especially because you create a team with values. You need to have important values to achieve your goals," Allegri said.
"Tonight, it was nice to see everyone participating in the match, those who played and those who didn't, with great enthusiasm.
"We must enjoy the victory tonight but from tomorrow we must immediately think about Verona, otherwise on Thursday we risk throwing what we have done overboard.
"We are two points from fourth place, let's see what happens in Verona."