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Gianluigi Buffon – Juventus’ defensive maestro

Posted by Tomáš Molnár

 

Gianluigi_Buffon_Euro_2012_final_01

Bio

Gianluigi Buffon was born on 28th of January, 1978. He has played for 2 teams, (both) Italian – Parma and over the last 15 seasons for Juventus. He is considered to be one of the best goalkeepers ever.

From his silverware we can mention especially:

  • 2006 World Cup Champions with Italy
  • 6 times Serie A Champions with Juventus
  • Runner-up in 2002/2003 Champions League (against AC Milan)

But there is a possibility of something extraordinary happening this year. Gigi (his known nickname) can win treble this year.

 

Treble opportunity

Serie A title is already a checked point from the list. Juventus did so by beating Sampdoria away from home on 2nd May. It is 4th consecutive title for the Old Lady, a club from Torino recognized world-wide.

Buffon commented recent achievements under Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri: “We knew that after many years of victories and successes it would have been easy to give in to a sense of fulfilment and to sit back, which is only human and even normal for sportsmen performing at this level.

“But perhaps we have been driven by the desire to show that everything we have achieved and won over the years is down to us, and as a result this year we are taking things on to the next stage.”

Domestic league cup’s winner, called Coppa Italia, will be determined on 7th of June, in a match against well-performing Lazio.

The most sparkling of the three is of course Champions League, where recently Juve has played Real Madrid. Real is a team that has a lot to thank to Juve for the transfer of Zinedine Zidane.

Champions League

Recently there was semi-final game played at Juventus Stadium against famous Real Madrid. Juventus did well and earned a victory 2-1. Only in-form Cristiano Ronaldo was able to pass the ball behind Buffon’s back. The victory itself is tricky, because at Santiago Bernábeu they should not afford losing. . Of course, under certain circumstances (like losing 3-2) Juventus can still reach finals. Theoretically if Juventus advances to the final stage, most likely there will be another Spanish giant waiting – Barcelona. They defeated Bayern 3-0 in the first leg and there is only borderline chance for Bayern to do something about it.

Gianluigi commenting Champions League: “It is a strange thing because I have won virtually everything but the one thing I haven’t won is the Champions League, although I have got very close, losing a final on penalties”.

“There are at least three teams ahead of us in terms of experience at the international level and the players that they have. But I do believe that we are a team on the way up. As a group we have been playing together for a long time; every now and then a new player has come in to improve the team and that is why I think we can do well.”

“In fact I am convinced of this and I think that we are able to compete with any other team. But there is a big difference between saying this and thinking that we can win the Champions League.”

 

Regrets and transfer speculations

There is one major regret Gianluigi admits – not playing in the Premier League. “I watch the Premier League. Unfortunately, or rather fortunately from lots of different points of view, in my career I have only ever played in Italy and in two teams: Parma and Juventus,” said Buffon.

“Clearly I feel both flattered and proud of the fact that I have only ever played in two teams, having played for Parma for 10 years and now I am starting my 15th year at Juventus.

“But one small regret I do have is that I have never played in the Premier League. I think that I would have liked it a lot and I think that I would have been able to get on with the supporters because I think that they are very special.”

Gianluigi is also an admirer of Joe Hart. He is pleased with Joe’s recent progress and that Joe is more stabilized, making fewer mistakes. Can we view this as hints about a possible move to Man City to be 2nd keeper, helping Joe Hart in person? Most likely YES!

Resources

wikipedia.org, bbc.com

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