Italy’s Salvatore Sirigu says he is proud to represent the island of Sardinia at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
The Paris Saint Germain goalkeeper played in the Azzurri’s opening win over England on Saturday and, with Gigi Buffon still uncertain of recovering in time, he may continue deputising between the sticks against Costa Rica on Friday.
“At the start it was pure emotion, then when I went to my room to rest before the match I got a lot of calls and messages,” Sirigu revealed to a Press conference.
“I realised then that things were starting to get serious.
“We (Sardinians) don’t have a great tradition of goalkeepers. Representing my region is always a source of pride for me. I am happy to have brought a bit of Sardinia to Brazil.
“Buffon wished me good luck and told me to stay calm. The way he was with me gave me some calmness.”
The 27-year-old also commented on who he believes to be the top goalkeepers in the world today, excepting his international captain Buffon.
“Neuer. I’ve never hidden that, he is complete and he is a player with a lot of confidence. He is the modern goalkeeper.
“Courtois is also among the top keepers in the world.
“I don’t even know if I am in the top ten but it doesn’t interest me.
“I look to train and give all that I have. The rankings don’t interest me. The satisfaction is inside you yourself, it doesn’t come if others say ‘well done.’
“I am happy when I know I have given my all.”