Andrea Barzagli says he feels “privileged” to wear the black and white stripes of Juventus and hopes to bring down the curtain on his career as a professional footballer in Turin.
The Tuscan defender, who joined the Bianconeri from Bundesliga side Wolfsburg in early 2011, has been a mainstay of Antonio Conte’s back-to-back Scudetto winning side, providing a formidable defensive presence that has proved a fundamental driving force behind the club’s recent success.
Speaking to Cristina Chiabotto on JTV’s Filo Diretto, Barzagli began: “Playing for Juventus is a privilege for any footballer. I still remember the excitement of the stadium’s inauguration, during which all the club’s prestigious history was recounted. I hope to be able to end my career here.”
The 32-year-old shared the disappointment of Wednesday night’s narrow 2-1 Champions League defeat to Real Madrid, but remains upbeat regarding the Bianconeri’s chance of qualifying for the knockout stages.
“It’s a great feeling to play at the Bernabeu. It’s a wonderful stadium and Real are a fine team. But on Wednesday night we showed that we’re capable of competing with them.
“We know we must put in a great performance in the return game, but we’ll also be able to count on the great boost provided by playing in front of our fans. Our route out of the group has become difficult but we know we can still get through, especially after our display in Madrid.”
With Europe’s elite competition moving out of focus for the next ten days, Barzagli and his team-mates will now look to resume the chase on Serie A leaders Roma when they welcome Genoa to Juventus Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
And the centre-back says the team are determined to erase the memory of last weekend’s Fiorentina reverse by claiming all three points against Gian Piero Gasperini’s side.
“It will be another important game, we need to get back to winning ways as soon as possible in order to forget what happened in Florence. Genoa have recently changed manager and I think they’ll come here to sit back and put bodies behind the ball. The championship is more open this year, with Napoli and Roma proving well-equipped rivals.
“We know we’ve got to improve after conceding a few too many goals in our most recent fixtures. It’s not that we’re giving that much more away this season, we just need to cut down on the individual mistakes that have barely occurred over the last two years. We’ve got our sights firmly fixed on the title, winning the third Scudetto in a row would represent a historic achievement for both the players and club.”