«I’m going back to the national team because that child who crossed the Coverciano gate for the first time thirty years ago still wants to dream and live this dream together with the Italian fans». This was said by Gigi Buffon, the 2006 German world champion and former Juventus goalkeeper, who has assumed the position of head of the blue delegation.
«Since the first contact in recent days with President Gravina and then with Mauro Vladovich, I had already decided to say yes, but we had to check some technical aspects; the national team comes first and nothing would have stopped me from going home,” he added.
«The Azzurra jersey «has always been part of my life: I wore it with pride – the world champion still remembers – and honored with commitment, it gave me unique emotions, I cried when we won the World Cup and when we failed to qualify. I had the privilege of being the only goalkeeper in 113 years to be able to wear the Azzurro, in addition to the various colors of the goalkeeper’s shirts and it was a tribute that I greatly appreciated. The relationship with the national team from the Under 15s to the Maggiore was visceral: every call-up, every training session, every game, everything was special, because in those moments you feel you are there to represent your nation, your people, and the immense responsibility has always given me the strength not to give up and to get up after every fall».
“Honored of the role that once belonged to Gigi Riva and Vialli”
«I will immediately place myself at the disposal of Roberto Mancini and the group, entering on tiptoe, because I have always thought that in the national team it is not the medals on your chest that count but the commitment, the sacrifice, the availability towards the team-mates and the staff who you are willing to put in day by day». «And these characteristics have always belonged to me – he added – and they will also accompany me off the pitch. Being in the place that Gigi Riva has been for years, an example as a man and as a footballer, is an honor and today he will be the first person I will speak to to get some suggestions from him. Then of course I will also hear the CT with whom we will see each other as soon as possible. Even if he scored me the most beautiful goal of his career, or almost so, in Parma (Parma – Lazio, 17 January ’99, the back-heel goal for the momentary 1-2, then it will be 1-3 ed), but the I have already forgiven, I am a person of great feelings!». «Today – concludes Gigi – finally, I like to mention three people who I think would be happy with this choice: Gianluca, who preceded me in this role; Davide, who spent many days with me and Daniele in the national team; Spazzolino, a good person among the first to welcome me in Coverciano».(