Italy skipper Sergio Parisse says they have nothing to lose when they clash with England in the Six Nations opener on Sunday. Both sides are set to meet at the Stadio Olimpico, with England expected to emerge victors.

Italy have never defeated England even after 23 meetings. Their last victory in the championship was when they faced Scotland three years back. On the other hand, England are the favourites in the tournament and they are keen on becoming the first team to win three outright titles.

Parisse opines that England are the one under pressure when they meet especially after their Six Nations victory last year. He says the team will try to put up “a big performance” against England as their focus is to prove themselves against a top team.

“We don’t have any pressure on us – we are playing England, the second best team in the world,” Parisse was quoted to have said. He adds that the team just wants to put up “a great performance against a great team.”

The Italian opines that England “have lost a little bit” with the absence of Billy Vunipola who is replaced by Sam Simmonds. He says there is a difference to both players in terms of physicality and carrying. He says they will be concentrating on Courtney Lawes and Chris Robshaw more though they believe Simmonds will be hoping to impress. Parisse believes Italy would pose a real threat for England especially with their back row.