It’s not every day that a keeper like Gianluigi Buffon comes around. And while Juventus are celebrating their seventh straight Serie A title, Buffon is thinking about the future. And it’s come to this: he’s stepping away at the end of the 2017-18 season. Juventus would announce the following over Twitter:
“Saturday will be my final match for Juventus, and to end this journey with two cups and with the president and the entire Bianconeri world by my side will be very special.”
But that’s not all. In fact, Buffon also confirms he’s stepping away from international football as well. However, it doesn’t seem to be due to a lack of ability.
“I can confirm that I’ll be staying away from the national team. There are several young keepers who need to gain experience to grow.”
Italy, of course, did not qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia. It probably would’ve been Buffon’s final international tournament. That said, he does leave Juventus with plenty of silverware. He holds nine Serie A titles, for starters. Not to mention one World Cup championship with Italy (2006) and several more domestic cups.
Back in 2001, Parma would sell Buffon to Juventus for just over €51 million. All these years later, that still stands as the world record transfer for a goalkeeper.
Despite leaving Juventus, we don’t know if Buffon plans to retire outright. If this is it, we probably won’t see another one quite like him anytime soon.