Italy and Juventus legend Gianluigi Buffon is set to leave Turin at the end of the season and the experienced goalkeeper is willing to move abroad in search of more playing time as he approaches the end of his career.
The 43-year-old has made only ten appearances in all competitions for I Bianconeri this year and, with his contract set to expire in the summer, he is now assessing his options ahead of the 2021/22 campaign.
According to La Gazzetta, Buffon has decided to leave Juventus and is prepared to remain in Italy or even look abroad in order to secure the role of first-choice keeper at a top European team.
This remains top of the World Cup winner’s list of priorities, as he has grown weary of playing second fiddle in Turin over the past couple of seasons. His displays in the Coppa Italia, in which Juve have reached the final, prove that he still has the hunger and ability to compete at the highest level, despite his advancing years.
Indeed, many have suggested that he may decide to retire if he is unable to find a suitable home after leaving the Italian giants, but Buffon himself feels physically strong and is not ready to hang up his gloves just yet.
Juve have not put a concrete offer on the table for him to extend his time in Turin, and as it stands, there are no major European clubs on the lookout for a new first-choice goalkeeper, meaning his options are severely limited.
The hypothesis of a summer move to Porto has been mentioned, where he would follow in the footsteps of fellow legend Iker Casillas, who left Real Madrid to join the Liga NOS side in 2015. That possibility remains up in the air, though.
Buffon clearly feels the weight of leaving Juventus, and given his strong emotional attachment to the club and his great relationship with president Andrea Agnelli, he doesn’t want this situation to play out too publicly.
The Italian legend’s future remains uncertain for now, and only time will tell whether he lands one final dream move or decides to give up on the game for good.