The Italy and Juven­tus leg­end played since 1995, becom­ing one of the best goal­keep­ers in his­to­ry.

Ital­ian goal­keep­er Gian­lui­gi Buf­fon announced his retire­ment on social net­works. He post­ed videos of var­i­ous moments of his career.

“Well, that’s all, guys. You gave me every­thing. I gave you every­thing. We did it togeth­er.”
Gian­lui­gi Buf­fon

Now Buf­fon is 45 years old: he returned to his native Par­ma, which was rel­e­gat­ed from Serie A, hav­ing con­clud­ed an agree­ment until 2023. In Feb­ru­ary, he extend­ed his con­tract until 2024, but decid­ed to end his career ear­ly. Last sea­son he played 19 match­es for Par­ma and con­ced­ed 24 goals.

We looked back at the best saves of Buf­fon’s career, who played pro­fes­sion­al foot­ball for almost 30 years.

Debut match in Parma against Milan

Par­ma was the first pro­fes­sion­al club in Buf­fon’s career. He played for the team from 1995 to 2001. His debut took place in a match against Milan in Novem­ber, when he was only 17 years old.

Buf­fon faced a team full of leg­ends, includ­ing Rober­to Bag­gio and George Weah. The young goal­keep­er made sev­er­al excel­lent saves and earned the team a 0:0 draw.

The most mem­o­rable was the save from Rober­to Bag­gio’s shot. Buf­fon man­aged to make a save with his fin­ger­tips and save the goal.

Save in the match against Inter in the Champions League

On May 23, 2000, Par­ma played Inter in a Cham­pi­ons League match. After an excel­lent strike from Alvaro Reco­ba, the ball flew into the left cor­ner.

All the Inter play­ers who watched what was hap­pen­ing could hard­ly believe that the ball did not fly into the goal. Inter beat Par­ma 3:1, but Buf­fon con­firmed his sta­tus as one of Italy’s most promis­ing goal­keep­ers.

Save for Juventus against Milan in the Champions League final

Buf­fon moved from Par­ma to Juven­tus. In total, as a mem­ber of the Turin club, he became the Ital­ian cham­pi­on ten times, won the Ital­ian Cup four times and the Ital­ian Super Cup six times.

In 2003, Buf­fon played against Milan in the Cham­pi­ons League final. In the end, he par­ried an incred­i­bly pow­er­ful shot from Fil­ip­po Inza­ghi. After the save, Buf­fon was jubi­lant, and Inza­ghi clutched his head — the for­ward did not under­stand how the ball missed the goal.

How­ev­er, Buf­fon’s save did not play a key role. Milan won the match and the title 3–2 on penal­ties.

Buffon’s save to win the World Cup for Italy

Buf­fon and Italy defeat­ed a dif­fi­cult oppo­nent, Ger­many, in the semi-finals of the 2006 World Cup. After which we met in the final with anoth­er top team — France.

The oppo­nents includ­ed great foot­ball play­ers: Thier­ry Hen­ry, Claude Makelele and, of course, Zine­dine Zidane. The lat­ter is remem­bered for two actions in the final: he scored a dar­ing penal­ty, and then sent off after Mar­co Mat­er­azz­i’s head­er.

Min­utes before this, anoth­er moment occurred — Buf­fon’s save after Zidane’s shot. The goal­keep­er lined up well and hit the ball as it flew under the cross­bar. Many peo­ple for­get, but this was the key moment of the final — if France had scored a goal, the game would have turned out dif­fer­ent­ly.

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One-handed save from Roberto Carlos

In 2005, in a Cham­pi­ons League match with Real Madrid, Buf­fon made a spec­tac­u­lar save after Rober­to Car­los’ sig­na­ture free-kick. Then the ball flew at a speed of 140 km/h and spun, but Buf­fon was able to stop the strike with one hand.

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Buf­fon remains in his­to­ry as one of the best goal­keep­ers of all time. He left behind 285 clean sheets in Serie A, a record that made him a leg­end of Ital­ian foot­ball. In addi­tion, Buf­fon played the most match­es for the Ital­ian nation­al team and in Serie A.