Italy’s goal­keeper Buf­fon ends in­ter­na­tional ca­reer

Millennium Post - - SPORT -

MI­LAN: Italy goal­keeper Gian­luigi Buf­fon con­firmed he was end­ing his in­ter­na­tional ca­reer af­ter the four-time cham­pi­ons failed to reach the World Cup for the first time in 60 years.

Buf­fon, 39, played his 175th and fi­nal game for Italy as they were beaten 1-0 on ag­gre­gate in a play-off by Swe­den af­ter a 0-0 sec­ond-leg draw at the San Siro, bring­ing an end to a 20-year in­ter­na­tional ca­reer that in­cluded win­ning the 2006 World Cup.

“I’m not sorry for my­self but all of Ital­ian foot­ball,” Buf­fon told Ital­ian broad­caster Rai.

“We failed at some­thing which also means some­thing on a so­cial level. There’s re­gret at fin­ish­ing like that, not de­fender Barza­gli.

Mid­fielder De Rossi, who won 117 caps, said: “To think that I took off this jer­sey for the last time, it hurts. Af­ter the match, there was a fu­neral-like at­mos­phere.” Buf­fon made his de­but for the Az­zurri as a 19-year-old in a 1998 World Cup play-off vic­tory over Rus­sia, but his last match saw him fail in his bid to be­come the first man to play in six World Cups.

The Ju­ven­tus cap­tain, who has al­ready said he will likely re­tire from all foot­ball at the end of this sea­son, said Italy fans still have plenty to look for­ward to, with AC Mi­lan’s 18 -year-old keeper Gian­luigi Don­narumma set to take the in­ter­na­tional num­ber one shirt.

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