Gigi Buffon is hopeful Juventus will soon begin to express their “enormous potential” in the Champions League as well as on Italian soil.
The three-time consecutive Serie A title winners have dominated the domestic scene in recent seasons but have yet to express their full abilities on the European stage.
And Buffon, speaking on the eve of tomorrow’s Group A clash against Olympiacos, is backing the Bianconeri to turn the corner in Europe by bringing all their qualities to the fore.
Addressing reporters in Greece, the 36-year-old began: “This squad has huge potential, in my opinion. We've not realised our full potential yet. Perhaps we're stronger than we're even aware of. I'm sure we can demonstrate that in Europe - starting from tomorrow, I hope!”
Tomorrow sees Juventus aim to bounce back at the first time of asking after leaving Madrid empty-handed three weeks ago, following a combative 90 minutes against reigning La Liga champions Atletico.
But Buffon believes his team-mates shouldn’t be disheartened by the final outcome, and chose to reflect on the positives when analysing their performance in the Spanish capital.
“Despite the fact we didn’t create many clear-cut chances, we always remained in control against a team who won La Liga and went a few seconds away from winning the Champions League.”
It is precisely the kind of upbeat mentality that the Bianconeri must take into Wednesday night’s game at the Karaiskakis Stadium, where a red-hot reception awaits.
“Aside from having great fans and a stadium which is sure to be rocking tomorrow night, Olympiacos are a team with some good individual players and a high standard of football. After their Champions League campaign last year, I think they deserve our utmost respect.”
Buffon was part of the Juventus squad that recorded back-to-back triumphs in the club’s last meetings with Olympiacos, including a 7-0 demolition in Turin, but he is convinced that tomorrow’s opponents represent a different prospect altogether.
“I think today’s Olympiacos side is different from the one we faced back in 2003. So many years have gone by that it’s pointless making comparisons: both the world and football have changed.”