Juventus must improve to win Champions League: Buffon

Turin, Oct 30 (IANS) Juventus’ veteran captain Gianluigi Buffon has urged his teammates to step up their game in order to be more successful in the European Champions League.

The Turin giants, who are aiming to become the first club to win sixth consecutive Serie A title this season, went five points clear at the top with a 2-1 win over arch rivals Napoli on Saturday.

But Buffon reminded his team that its form, performance and style of play may not be enough when they compete in the Champions League as they bid to end the title drought in the elite European competition since the 1995-96 season.

“I’m delighted with the win as it enables us to keep working calmly. But if we want to go far in Europe and compete with the continent’s best teams, we need to raise our game higher still. We can’t rest on our laurels just because we’ve won this match,” the veteran goalkeeper told Juventus website.

“Winning is the most important thing because it shields you from criticism and allows you to work constructively without any added pressure,” added the 38-year-old.

“Today’s victory is a fillip for us on a long journey. We’re showing who we are through our results but if I think of the latter stages of the Champions League we need to grow a bit more.”

Buffon, who has been playing for Juventus since 2001, added that he believes the strength of the squad could prove crucial in their quest for success.

“Our team has changed a lot and we’re working hard to exploit our ability to the full but you have to be able to go out there and play convincing football in every match — and with a squad like ours do so even when we’re missing players. We must keep raising the bar,” the 2006 World Cup winner concluded.

–IANS

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