Gigi Buffon says he can continue playing until 2023, but doesn’t rule out the possibility of retiring at the end of the season.
Buffon returned to Juventus in 2019 and his contract with the Old Lady expires in June.
“Look, in my head, there truly is a final stop sign, a maximum bar, which is June 2023,” the 43-year-old told The Guardian.
“That is the maximum, really, really the maximum. But I could also stop playing in four months.
“They say that when you reach my age, the decline happens all at once – from one moment to the next. I don’t believe this. I feel what I feel, and the sensations I have within myself don’t make me think there is going to be some sudden collapse,” he added.
“I am also someone who believes very strongly in fate, in destiny. When Juventus offered me the chance to come back, I thought: ‘Madonna! You never know, maybe there’s a reason, something I’m meant to go back there for. One last great story to write. So I have to be honest, there is also a part of this that comes down to that bit of ego all of us have.”
The 2006 Italy World Cup winner touched on many issues, including how he lived in lockdown due to the COVID pandemic one year ago and his relationship with his former teammate Andrea Pirlo who is now the Juventus coach.
“In front of other people, he [Pirlo] will always be ‘Mister’. This is a matter of roles, a matter of respect, a matter of intelligence,” Buffon said.
“As long as we are here, he has one role and I have another. When we leave this place or we go out together, then we can be Gigi and Andrea.”
“I have to be honest, for me the first month of lockdown was really beautiful,” he continued.
“At first, the pandemic allowed me to have time to dedicate to myself. That’s something that hadn’t happened to me in my whole life.
“I got to stay with my wife, my kids all day long. To be able to dedicate myself to my hobbies, to my reading, to my things. It was a beautiful time that I never thought I would have, and I took full advantage and I loved it.
“Then, of course, as time goes, it becomes heavy. You think more and more about what others are going through.”