THE WIN­NER TAKES IT ALL

FourFourTwo - - THE BEAUTIFUL GAME -

It wasn’t sup­posed to end like this. When Gian­luigi Buffon, this gen­er­a­tion’s pre-em­i­nent goal­keeper, an­nounced he would re­tire at the end of the 2017-18 sea­son, the World Cup next sum­mer seemed the per­fect place to take his fi­nal bow. Then Jakob Jo­hans­son’s de­flected strike from the edge of the area in Stock­holm – cel­e­brated by Emil Fors­berg – ruined Buffon’s an­tic­i­pated hur­rah in Rus­sia, a goal­less sec­ond leg seal­ing the Az­zurri’s fate. It’ll be the first World Cup with­out Italy since 1958. Ciao, Gigi!

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