The €52 million Juventus paid for Buffon in 2001 remains a record for a goalkeeper.

Record-breaking goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon confirms his retirement
Published: November 15, 2017

Italy's most-capped player Gianluigi Buffon has confirmed his retirement from international football after 20 years and 175 caps.

 

The 39-year-old goalkeeper was expected hang up his international boots following the World Cup next year but hastened his departure following Italy's play-off defeat to Sweden on Monday night.

 

Buffon has competed in a record five World Cup finals – winning the 2006 edition in Germany – but failed to add a sixth to his resumé following the 1-0 aggregate loss.

 

"We have pride, strength and we're stubborn,” Buffon said following the scoreless draw that confirmed the Azzurri's elimination.

 

“We know how to get back up again as we've always done. I'm leaving an Italy side that will know how to speak for itself. Hugs to everyone, especially those I've shared this wonderful journey with.”

 

The Tuscan native played his youth football with Parma in Sicily, making his Serie A debut as a 17-year-old in a scoreless draw with AC Milan.

 

Buffon won a Coppa Italia and the UEFA Cup before a financial meltdown led the Sicilian club to sell him to Juventus for €52 million – which remains a record fee for a goalkeeper.

 

In 16 years with the Old Lady, Buffon won Serie A ten times (two of which were revoked following the Calciopoli scandal), one Serie B title and the Coppa Italia three times.

 

Most famously, he was part of the Italy squad that won the World Cup in 2006, again setting a record for a goalkeeper by conceding just twice in seven games, keeping five clean sheets.

 

He was also the first-choice goalkeeper as Italy finished runners-up at Euro 2016, beating Ireland 2-0 along the way, and has been a beaten finalist in the Champions League on three occasions.


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