Gianluigi Buffon is “happy and proud” to have beaten Paolo Maldini’s record, while preparing Juventus for the “Scudetto battle” with Antonio Conte’s Inter.
The goalkeeper started Saturday’s 2-0 win over SPAL, which represented his 903rd game at club level, more than any other Italian and surpassing Milan legend Maldini’s 902.
“It is certainly satisfying. I am happy and proud to have reached this record, but even more so because I did it at the age of almost 42 and in surprisingly good condition. I never thought six or seven years ago that I’d still be in such strong shape,” Buffon told TMW.
“It makes me happy to realise life has been truly benevolent with me in some ways, while I also know that I put a lot of hard work into it.”
Juve and Inter are the top two with two points separating them and they go head-to-head at San Siro next weekend.
While some try to be cagey about the meaning of this fixture in Week 7, Buffon is not hiding behind pat phrases.
“Of course it’s a Scudetto battle. We are challenging for the title, that goes without saying, but as is only right, Inter also aim to win the Scudetto.
“I know perfectly well the credo of Conte and Beppe Marotta, so I know full well that hope is in their hearts. It’s only right that they should believe in their title chances, because it’s a quality squad, they know their football, have this great energy to transmit to the team and can challenge to the end for the trophy.
“I’ve seen Juventus constantly growing this season, building brick by brick, game after game. I believe the way forward is to continue raising the bar, trying if possible to enjoy our football and do something new, seeing as that’s why the changes were made.
“I think there were also positive signs from the Champions League. We drew 2-2 with Atletico Madrid, but we played the game, created five or six chances and really scared Atleti on their own turf. That’s no guarantee of success, but it’s a comforting sign.”
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