Perrotta was eligible to play for both Italy and England – the latter due to his birth in the country (in addition to being Italian, he is automatically a British citizen as the United Kingdom granted unconditional birthright citizenship until 1983). Perrotta made his debut for the Italy under-21 team under Marco Tardelli, making 6 appearances and scoring a goal. He won the 2000 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship, appearing in Italy’s 2–1 victory over the Czech Republic in the final, but was later dropped from the 2000 Summer Olympics squad due to injury. He made his senior international debut under Giovanni Trapattoni, on 20 November 2002, in a 1–1 draw against Turkey. He subsequently played for Italy at UEFA Euro 2004, scoring a goal in a 2–1 win against Bulgaria, although the Italian national side were eliminated in the first round of the tournament on direct-encounters following a three-way five point tie with Denmark and Sweden. Perrotta also represented the Italian national team during the 2006 FIFA World Cup under coach Marcello Lippi, starting in all seven of the Azzurri’s games, including the final, en route to their fourth World Cup title, setting up Filippo Inzaghi’s goal in a 2–0 win over the Czech Republic in Italy’s final group match of the tournament on 22 June. Unlike with Roma, Perrotta was often used as a left winger with the Italian national team under Lippi, or as a “front-lying” defensive midfielder, as he was in the 2006 World Cup. Under new manager Roberto Donadoni, Perrotta scored his second goal for Italy in a 3–1 away win over Georgia in a Euro 2008 qualifying match on 11 October 2006. He made his first appearance as Italy captain on 21 November 2007, in the second half of a 3–1 home win over the Faroe Islands, in a European qualifier. He went on to take part at UEFA Euro 2008, often appearing as an attacking midfielder, where Italy lost out to eventual champions Spain on penalties in the quarter-finals. In 2009, after being left out from 2010 FIFA World Cup squad by Marcello Lippi, he retired from international football; he made his final appearance for Italy on 10 February 2009, in a 2–0 friendly defeat to Brazil, at the Emirates Stadium. In total he made 48 appearances for Italy, scoring 2 goals. A quick, physically strong, energetic, tenacious, and hard-working two-way player, Perrotta was known for his pace, versatility, and consistency, as well as his stamina, box-to-box play, and hard running style, which allowed him to play anywhere in midfield; although he was usually used in the centre, and often in a holding role in front of the defence, where he was adept at breaking down plays and subsequently distributing the ball to team-mates after winning back possession, throughout his career, he was also deployed out wide, as a mezzala, or even in a more advanced role, behind the strikers, due to his movement off the ball and ability to make attacking runs into the penalty box, as well as his eye for goal from midfield. Perrotta is of Calabrian origins and was born in England. He lived in England until the age of five, attending the former St Ann’s RC Primary School on Burlington Street in Ashton-under-Lyne. His parents, Francesco and Anna Maria, ran a pub in Ashton and lived on Fitzroy Street and briefly at the Chiltern Chapel before moving back to Italy in 1982, to their hometown Cerisano, in the province of Cosenza. He is married and he has a son called Peter. On 22 December 2010, a statue of Perrotta was unveiled in Ashton-under-Lyne, close to Curzon Ashton F.C.’s Tameside Stadium in the Roy Oldham Sports Village, Richmond Street. The triple sculpture by Andrew Edwards and Sculpture For Sport commemorates the three men from the borough of Tameside who hold World Cup winner’s medals: Geoff Hurst, Jimmy Armfield, and Perrotta. He speaks English and Italian.