By Temisan Amoye
Veteran Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon has returned to Parma, where he began his career 20 years ago.
Buffon who left Juventus at the end of the 2020-21 season, was reportedly courted by Turkish champions Besiktas and Flamengo.
The Italian however opted to return to Parma, where he came through the youth system and spent six years with the senior team after making his debut in 1995.
Parma announced the return of “Superman” Buffon, in a video released on social media, showing an unidentified hooded figure digging up a memorabilia-filled chest buried in a goalpost at the Stadio Ennio Tardini, with the hooded figure revealing himself to be Buffon.
Buffon won the Coppa Italia, Supercoppa Italiana, and famously the 1998-99 UEFA Cup with Parma before leaving for Juve in 2001.
His time at Juventus produced immense success, winning 11 Serie A titles, five Coppa Italia, Six Suppercoppe Italiana. Despite appearing in three Champions League finals, Buffon won none.
Buffon’s success wasn’t restricted to Juventus, the legendary goalkeeper won the 2006 FIFA World Cup with the Azzurri, going on to make 176 caps for Italy, a record for the most capped Italian.
In joining Parma, Buffon takes a step down to Serie B, as Parma were relegated from the Serie A in the 2021-22 season, after recording just three wins in the league.