Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon has announced that he will leave the club at the end of the season.
Saturday’s Serie A home clash with Verona will, therefore, be his last for the Turin giants having helped them win the Scudetto and Coppa Italia this season.
It was expected that he would also announce that he is retiring from the game despite some reports linking him with Boca Juniors. But Buffon has revealed he has a series of offers that he is now weighing up, suggesting he may look to continue his playing career elsewhere.
“Over the next three days, full of emotion, I will, after two or three days of reflection, make a definitive decision,” he said. “I’ll try to follow whatever calls to my soul and my nature.
“On Saturday I will play a game and that is the only certainty I have. I’m having continual discussion with [Juventus president] Andrea Agnelli, who knows what is happening around me and is a counsellor I don’t want to lose.”
He did, however, exclude for playing for another Italian club, even resurgent Parma, who may play top-flight football next term after bankrupcy in 2015.
“A return to Parma is a romantic childhood dream, but nothing more than that,” he said.
Juve president Agnelli has confirmed the keeper is considering offers from other clubs.
“Any choice he makes, he’ll have my full support. He has received many bids, both as player and off-pitch,” he said.
“He knows that he has my full support for the future. I wish for him to enjoy Saturday at Allianz Stadium. I’d just like to say a massive ‘thank you’ to Gigi.”
Over a career spanning 23 years, the shot-stopper has so far turned out for just two clubs, starting at Parma before Juventus signed him for €52 million (£32.6m/$44m) in 2001, making him the most expensive goalkeeper ever – a title that he holds to this day.
The 40-year-old is regarded as an iconic figure of the world game, having won nine Serie A titles and the 1998-99 UEFA Cup among other prizes. However, his greatest achievement came in 2006, when he helped Italy win the World Cup.