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Gianluigi Buffon expected to announce his retirement on Thursday

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Juventus has called a press conference. Gigi Buffon will be there.

FC Crotone v Juventus - Serie A Photo by Maurizio Lagana/Getty Images

Juventus has called a press conference for Thursday. Seeing as Juve’s season finale is on Saturday, it’s not Max Allegri’s usual pre-game press conference since that’s always the day before a match. But Gigi Buffon will be there, and it’s expected that he will announce what we’ve all been expecting will happen from the beginning of the 2017-18 season.

Thursday is expected to be the day that Buffon retires.

Yes, it’s probably going to happen.

None of us want to see it. But, at the age of 40, it is going to happen.

We know that Buffon wanted to end his career at the World Cup in Russia this summer. That, obviously, won’t happen based on the disaster that was known as Italy’s World Cup qualifying adventures. So, that means Buffon’s last dance will almost certainly be this Saturday against Hellas Verona at what better be the best atmosphere at Allianz Stadium since Alessandro Del Piero played his final game in bianconero.

It’s true. It’s bound to happen.

Juventus director general Beppe Marotta had this to say about Buffon during an interview with JTV on Monday:

“Buffon’s farewell? In the meantime we just have to enjoy the past and the present of a champion. A champion who, when he leaves, will leave behind something indelible from a human and professional point of view. He’s a leader of himself and the team, it will be difficult for us to find a replacement, above all as a representative of positive values.”

Source: Football Italia)

Now that Juventus has locked up the Scdetto for a seventh straight season, this week should be all about Buffon. Thursday will (likely) be the day that he makes his retirement at season’s end official, but the plaudits and memories should come pouring in well before the official announcement is made a couple of days from now. Same goes for the memories of what Buffon has achieve in both his 17 years with Juventus and his entire career.

All the saves.

All the post-save celebrations.

All the goal celebrations from the opposite end of the field.

All the everything.

This is the G.O.A.T. we’re talking about here. I don’t need to remind you of that, but it never hurts because Buffon is Buffon and nothing will ever change that.