Italy goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon says he won't be fit to face England in tonight's World Cup opener, following an ankle injury in training.

Buffon, who picked up the injury at the Arena da Amazonia on Friday, wrote on his Twitter account ''there are many ways to be important, even if you can't be a protagonist on the pitch. ... So go Salvatore.''

Italy reserve goalkeeper Salvatore Sirigu of Paris Saint-Germain is expected to start the Group D match.

Coach Cesare Prandelli had remained more hopeful about the keeper's chances, telling Italian state broadcaster Rai `'we'll wait until the last minute hoping he can recover."

However, it now seems his hopes have been dashed.

Sirigu impressed in a 0-0 draw with Ireland two weeks ago in a warm-up match and has Champions League experience with PSG.