Gianluigi Buffon has hailed Juventus’ supporters for the “infinite affection” they have shown him as the goalkeeper prepares for the curtain to come down on his career with the Turin club.
Buffon re-joined Juve two years ago having spent 2018-19 at Paris Saint-Germain, but over the course of his second spell he has been second choice to Wojciech Szczesny.
The 43-year-old, who won 176 caps for Italy between 1997 and 2018, recently announced he will leave the Bianconeri at the end of the season but has not yet decided if he will continue playing or retire.
The veteran keeper could make his final appearance for Juventus in Sunday’s Serie A clash with Bologna, with Andrea Pirlo’s side battling to finish in the top four and secure Champions League football next season.
Buffon joined Juventus from Parma in 2001 and has won 10 Serie A titles, making more appearances in Italy’s top-flight (657) than any other player.
He claimed his fifth Coppa Italia winner’s medal after Juve’s 2-1 win over Atalanta on Wednesday and posted an emotional tribute to Juve fans on Instagram.
“You were the frame within which I painted my Bianconeri history,” Buffon said of the fans.
“In 20 years you never abandoned me, you always supported and encouraged me. Together we sank and together we were reborn.
“Together we experienced infinite joy and together we experienced profound disappointment.
“A simple thank you would never be sufficient to repay the infinite affection you showed me uninterrupted for 20 years.”