Published: Thu, May 17, 2018
Sports | By Brooke Harris

Italy great Buffon to leave Juventus

Italy great Buffon to leave Juventus

He enjoyed his career highlight when winning the 2006 World Cup with Italy, but the total body of his work makes him arguably the greatest and most decorated keeper in history.

"It gives me great pleasure that so many people have come out to see me".

The 40-year-old will play his final game for the club on Saturday, when the Serie A champions conclude their campaign against Verona at Allianz Stadium.

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"Until 15 days it was sure I would stop playing football, but now new challenges have arrived both on the pitch and outside the pitch". I'm proud to say it's not like that. "I don't want to end up playing in lower leagues".

"For the national team, I've said that if Buffon became a problem three months ago, I daren't think what I would have become three months, six months, 12 months later", he said. "I think it's the best way to end this wonderful adventure", the 40-year-old said.

"Saturday will be my last match with Juventus and I do believe it will be the most attractive thing to end my adventure this way", he said.

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"I've told him this so many times, but Gigi is a good guy he just laughs and nearly always replies: "maybe it's better this way". He had the desire to go to the World Cup in his mind but instead there was the Italy-Sweden playoff game, which Italy lost. "But he won the Italian Cup and the seventh Scudetto in a row".

A third Champions League final appearance in four years was still on the agenda until the dying seconds of Juve's quarterfinal clash with Real Madrid in April.

Buffon's career has nevertheless been more about the highs than the lows and, nearly 23 years since making his debut on November 19, 1995, for Parma against AC Milan, he bows out considered as one of the greatest goalkeepers of all time.

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"I'm going to play a match on Saturday and this is the only thing that's certain".

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