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Conte rests Buffon for Verona clash

Conte, who won five Serie A titles as a player for Juve, stressed his decision to rest key players would be to enable his side to be more competitive across European and Cup campaigns.

The Italian confirmed that club captain Gianluigi Buffon will be rested with second choice goalkeeper Marco Storari filling in during Sunday's home clash with Hellas Verona.

"If we want to be competitive in more competitions - the championship, Coppa Italia and the Champions League - then the whole squad should be involved," Conte said.

"We can't think of playing all matches with the same 11 players, otherwise the players will lose their energy.

"Storari will be playing tomorrow (in goal) and it's a normal alternation - we made the same last year.

"Gigi Buffon played two consecutive matches with the national team and there will be more consecutive matches to come: Chievo, Torino, Galatasaray and AC Milan, therefore we agreed to let him have a break for this match.

"We're all relaxed and this is just part of the alternation plan which could allow us to involve all players."

Conte's team are one of five yet to lose in Serie A, and he is not surprised at the level of quality on show in the Italian top flight this term.

"The championship is going to be very interesting and we should do our best in order to be competitive and win," he said.

"I'm not surprised because I expected it."