Italian football has undergone a drastic transformation over the past few years.
Serie A has fallen behind La Liga, the Premier League and the Bundesliga and cannot match these leagues in terms of spending, which has forced the majority of Italian clubs to invest in their academies.
This has been a positive for the Italian National Team, with Cesare Prandelli happy to give opportunities to the best young talent around in order to promote a better relationship between the senior and youth teams in the country.
Having reached the final of the European under-21 championship this summer, Italy can be optimistic about their future at senior level.
With Stephan El Shaarawy, 20, and Mario Balotelli, 22, providing motivation for youngsters that they can become stars at such an early stage of their career, we are sure to see many more young players being afforded an opportunity in the build-up to the World Cup.
Here are six youngsters who could feature prominently in the coming years, some of which might just force their way into next year's squad for Brazil.