By Tijjani Abdulsalam It seems we are going to have…
No player has symbolized the heart and soul of Italian football in the last 2 decades more than Gianluigi Buffon. However, all good things must come to an end and this is also true for the legendary Juventus and Italy goalkeeper who is one of the greatest shot-stoppers to have played the game and some would argue is the best of all time.
However, after 5 consecutive World Cup appearances between 1998-2014 and a winner’s medal in 2006, Buffon will not be going to Russia 2018 after Italy were knocked-out 1-0 by a dogged Sweden.
A tearful Buffon reflected on the state of Italian football and the end of his national team career saying:
“There is certainly a future for
Italian football, as we have pride, ability, determination and after bad tumbles, we always find a way to get back on our feet.
“I leave a squad of talent that will have their say, including Gigio Donnarumma and Mattia Perin. I want to give a hug to Chiello, Barza, Leo and Lele, who I
had almost 10 years alongside. I thank the lads who were with us and, although it wasn’t enough, I hope that we gave them something.
“In football you win as a group, you lose as a group, you divide the credit and the blame. The coach is part of this entire group.”
“I’m not sorry for myself but all of Italian
football. We failed at something which also means something on a social level. There’s regret at finishing like that, not because time passes.”
We wish Buffon all the best as he retires from International football and hope to see him achieve some great things with his club, Juventus before he retires totally from football.