Last week, a legend of the modern game, Gianluigi Buffon appeared to have confirmed his retirement from football. However, as the strange game has done before, even now it has thrown a twist with Buffon seemingly undecided on his retirement. He is sure to leave Juventus and this is what he had to say when asked about retirement.
“On Saturday, I will play a game and this is the only certainty,” he said. “With [president] Andrea [Agnelli], we are talking all the time and he knows all that is going on in my life, and in fact he’s an advisor I don’t want to go without.
“Up to two weeks ago, it was certain that I was going to quit playing, but now there are some offers that have arrived to continue playing, or offers from off the field — and Andrea has made me the best offer if I choose to stop playing.
“I think after Saturday, when I have some serenity, I will take my final decision, which will be to follow what comes from within me.
“Next week will be the week I decide what to do, but it’s a decision which will not change the way I feel. Two weeks ago, I had accepted that I was an ex-footballer, so whatever I do decide to do, I will be serene about it. The main thing is I don’t blemish this half of a lifetime I’ve had at Juventus and those who have believed in me.
“All that mattered for me was ending in the best way possible at Juve, and let’s not forget that Juve have an excellent goalkeeper who is 13 years younger than me.”
This has seen a host of top clubs including Chelsea thrown in the mix to sign the Italian legend. However, Paolo Fabbri and Silvano Martina, who manages the player has played down the move. “That seems highly unlikely,” Fabbri told skysports.com. “It would be no surprise that Chelsea want him as he is the best but as far as we know there has been nothing.”
Fabbri’s partner Martina had earlier confirmed that no bid had been forthcoming.
“Buffon in the view of Chelsea? I do not have anything to confirm this, but Abramovich is accustomed to go for the maximum and you might think if he went for a goalkeeper you think Gianluigi,” he said. “But this is hypothetical.”
As for Chelsea, they have a fantastic keeper in Thibaut Courtois. The Belgian is certainly in the top three in the world and it seems to make no sense to replace him with Buffon. However, Courtois’ future is yet to be committed to Chelsea and the Blues backup option Willy Caballero is simply not good enough.
This is the only case which might actually interest Chelsea in pursuing Buffon but a player like him is unlikely to come to a club until he’s assured of a starting spot, which will not happen until or unless Courtois departs. Moreover, a club like Chelsea will be likely to look for a younger option to replace Courtois rather than a player who is already north of 40, no matter how brilliant he is.