Excellent positional sense, courage, power and class. Many qualities are required by a goalkeeper to excel in his role and Gianluigi Buffon has them all in abundance, leading him to be considered one of the best, if not the very best in the world.
The Juventus captain has been honoured with this accolade on four occasions (2003, 2004, 2006, 2007), while the IFFHS, the International Institute for Football History and Statistics, declared him to be the best goalkeeper ever in 2009.
A pillar between the Bianconeri posts now since arriving from Parma in 2001, the 39-year-old has remarkably raised his game with every passing campaign with Juventus, where he has now won 10 Serie A titles, including a remarkable six in a row this season, five Italian Super Cups and two Coppa Italia crowns.
In 2015/16, he set a new record for minutes without conceding a goal in Italy’s top tier – a seemingly never-ending 973, while the following campaign he made his 1000th professional career appearance.
On the international scene, Gigi’s 161 appearances for the Italian national team make him the most capped player in Azzurri history. In 2006, Buffon was a world champion and was named in the team of the tournament for his inspired performances in Germany.
With an infectious personality and relentless desire to win, Gigi is a true leader both on the pitch and in the dressing room and very much remains Juventus’ Numero Uno as he enters his 16th season at the club.