Sunday October 13 2019
Buffon: 'Juve can only respect Conte'

Gianluigi Buffon discussed the Coaches he worked with, making saves in his sleep and why Juventus fans should “respect” Inter boss Antonio Conte.

The World Cup winner sat down with wife and TV presenter Ilaria D’Amico at the Festival dello Sport in Trento today, who revealed SuperGigi never quite switches off.

“Apparently I make saves in my sleep… Maybe they were the ones I wasn’t able to make during my career,” he laughed.

“I am very competitive and if I’m still playing, that’s the reason why. I like rivalry, but hate is humiliating to all mankind.”

Some of those emotions were on show when Conte moved to Inter, infuriating many Juve supporters who asked for his star to be removed from the Walk of Fame.

“I love Conte, he was my teammate first, my captain, my Coach at Juve and the Nazionale. I know the man and the professional, so I could never blame him for anything. He has this incredible professionalism and fairness when dealing with the squad, and is capable of really teaching football.

“Conte genuinely does not sleep at night if his team doesn’t play the way he wants. I understand the Bianconeri fans who are upset, but they must start from the idea that someone like Antonio has to be respected, because he gave all of himself for Juve and achieved great results.

“His choices can be debated, but what he gave to and received from Juve is very special.”

Buffon was asked about some of the Coaches he has worked with over the years.

“The toughest was certainly Conte. The most fun was Renzo Ulivieri, but also Max Allegri. Maurizio Sarri is the pickiest Coach I’ve ever dealt with.

“Carlo Ancelotti is the Coach I owe the most to. If Nevio Scala had the crazy idea of giving me my debut for Parma, Carlo was even crazier – he made me first choice ahead of Luca Bucci, my friend and an Italy international, after five or six games.

“It was a huge weight on my shoulders, but that’s where my career really started. I remember the goalkeeping coach William Vecchi told me: ‘Don’t be optimistic, because you’d be a loser. I’m sure you won’t let us down.’”

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