Gigi Buffon had a rather curious way of describing his respect for Lazio and Roma. “I wouldn’t urinate on Francesco Totti’s locker.”
The goalkeeper spoke at a Press conference with Coach Antonio Conte ahead of the Italian Super Cup, which kicks off at 20.00 UK time on Sunday at the Stadio Olimpico.
“In my view Lazio have over the last two years always shown themselves to be a tough opponent, hard to beat and in the Coppa Italia able to lift the trophy. We have great respect for this team.
“The efforts of the club were important to build the team and on paper we certainly have a better squad than last season. We can only confirm that on the pitch and with our daily work, as we want to continue amazing people.
“When there are one-off games for a trophy, there can be no risk of anyone being sated or unmotivated.
“Our fans, especially in occasions like this, have always supported us in the best possible way. I remember the Coppa Italia Final here against Napoli and that defeat was a severe disappointment. We hope to make up for that tomorrow.”
Miroslav Klose is Lazio’s primary hitman, but the German veteran has never scored against Juventus.
“I read that statistic. It sent a chill down my spine! When facing a player of that lineage, it’s normal that sooner or later he’ll score against you. I just hope it won’t be tomorrow! If that should occur, I hope Juve can win the trophy anyway.”
Buffon also praised his Italy teammate Federico Marchetti, who will be in goal for the Biancocelesti tomorrow.
“I can only speak highly of Federico. He’s a great example for kids, as he worked hard every day through difficulties not necessarily of his own doing and is a very generous guy who is appreciated in the locker room. I can only tip my hat to him.”
Some Roma fans are furious that Juventus have been loaned the Trigoria training camp to prepare for this big match, but Buffon had a rather colourful explanation of why nobody should be concerned.
“I think it was a gesture of great civility from Roma and the media probably ought to show it in a better light rather than bow to those who have nothing to do with the mechanism of this sport.
“It’s not as if I went to someone else’s house and urinated on my friend Totti’s locker! We showed great respect when visiting their training facilities, as we would when visiting anyone’s home.
“The first time I played against Lazio at the Olimpico was at the age of 18. Ever since the fans have always shown respect and fondness for me, perhaps also because many years ago my move to Lazio had been rumoured. I will salute the supporters, of course.”