We are underestimated, just like when we became world champions

Eighteen years after their world title, Italy is back in Germany. During the European Championship, La Squadra Azzurra will once again try to compete for the title. Gianluigi Buffon is there again, but this time not as a goalkeeper.

We are underestimated, just like when we became world champions Embed from Getty Images

As the team manager of the national squad, Buffon is currently taking care of all off-field matters concerning the team.

During the press conference in Germany, the football legend spoke. "I was curious about how I would feel on the eve of such a tournament, especially in my new role."

"I can say that what I feel is exactly the same as when I was still a player," Buffon told the Italian media. "The adrenaline is rising, more media are coming our way, and there were five thousand people watching the training. I want to contribute here and hope to experience great moments."

Buffon compared the situation to that of 2006, when not much was expected of Italy. "Just like then, Italy is now underestimated. We have a lot of quality and an impressive character. The unity and professionalism are outstanding. We are humble and work hard."

"Moreover, we have four, five, or maybe even six absolute top players," Buffon continued. "So we can go far," he concluded.

Buffon, who played a crucial role in Italy's 2006 World Cup victory, is now looking to inspire and support the current squad from a managerial position. His presence brings a wealth of experience and a winning mentality to the team, something that could be pivotal in navigating the pressures of a major tournament.

Italy's preparation for Euro 2024 has been meticulous, with Buffon overseeing logistical aspects to ensure the players can focus solely on their performance. The former goalkeeper's insight and leadership are seen as valuable assets, particularly in maintaining team morale and cohesion.

On Saturday, Italy begins the group stage with a match against Albania, a team that has shown significant improvement in recent years. Following this, they will face Spain, a formidable opponent known for their technical prowess, and Croatia, a team with a strong track record in international tournaments.

The Italian squad features a blend of seasoned veterans and young talents, creating a balanced team capable of adapting to different challenges. The anticipation and excitement are building as fans eagerly await to see if La Squadra Azzurra can replicate their past success and perhaps surprise the world once again.

With Buffon's confidence and the squad's determination, Italy enters Euro 2024 with the belief that they can defy expectations and compete for the title. The journey begins with their opening match, setting the stage for what promises to be a thrilling tournament.

Updated: 04:27, 12 Jun 2024

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