When you want to preserve a 1-0 lead in the second half, it's always nice to have somebody of the upmost of quality manning your team's goal. That's why the best of the best are so valuable and are so in-demand no matter how old they may be.
Well, here's another thing to think about: It's even better to have Gianluigi Buffon as your No. 1 in goal.
Luckily for Italy, that's been the case for the better part of the last 15 or so years. On Friday night at the Stadio Renzo Barbera in Palermo, Buffon was up to his Buffon best yet again. What exactly does that include? Well, saves — lots and lots of saves. And of the highest of difficulty, too. Saves that make us put our hands to our heads and wonder how exactly he did what we just saw in front of us.
That talk of Buffon maybe being past it after a mistake against Lazio last weekend? Nah, forget that.
Three world-class saves in the second half allowed Italy to maintain their 1-0 lead against Bulgaria, showing once again that just because he's in his mid-30s means he's on the downside of his career. Ah, far from it.
Rai: Our Goalkeeper is a good one eh... Chiellini "He's not bad." Rai: Can he go on? Chiellini "This young man can go on for a while."— Tarek Khatib (@ADP1113) September 6, 2013
Exactly, Giorgione. Exactly.
And why not watch Buffon do his usual awesome thing in goal with an Arabic announcer screaming at the same time? Sounds wonderful.