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Buffon Clean Sheet In 1,000th Game As Italy Beat Albania 2-0

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Gianluigi Buffon has become the most capped European footballer ever making his 168th appearances for his national side as Italy played against Albania on Friday.

The Juventus goalkeeper outperforms ‘manager Iker Casillas and Latvia midfielder Vitalijs Astafjevs, who both have 167 capped to their name.

He is likewise now joint-fifth on the general rundown close by former Ecuador defender Ivan Hurtado, however despite everything he has some approach to outperform world-record holder Ahmed Hassan of Egypt who has 184 caps.

The 39-year-old made his international debut for the Azzurri as a 19-year-old against Russia in October 1997 and has represented the Azzurri at eight worldwide competitions, including winning the 2006 World Cup.

Buffon has now additionally played 1000 matches as a professional when his international outings plus clubs caps for Juventus and Parma.

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In Palermo, it was a day for Buffon to savour as he won a European record 168th cap and helped Italy broaden their unbeaten run in qualifiers to 55 matches (41 wins, 14 draws).

A first-half Daniele De Rossi penalty and a late goal from Ciro Immobile was sufficient to help the Azzurri secure three points yet they stay behind Spain on goal difference at the top of Group G after La Rioja side brought down Israel 4-1.

Manchester City forward David Silva and Chelsea’s Diego Costa were on the scoresheet alongside Isco and Vitolo, while Lior Refaelov got Israel’s reassurance.

De Rossi changed over the spot-kick on 12 minutes after Migjen Basha, one of six Albanians plying his club trade in Italy, cut down Andrea Belotti.

Albanian fans tossed flares onto the pitch in disgust and when they did as such again just before the hour mark, the game was suspended for five minutes.

Spain had their game wrapped up significantly by half time in Gijon as Silva drove home a pass from Jordi Alba before Vitolo’s shot in first half damage time squirmed under Israel goalkeeper Ofir Marciano.

While Diego Costa headed home a Thiago Alcantara corner on 51 minutes. Refaelov gave the visitors something to cheer with a left-foot exertion on 76 minutes, only minutes after Rami Gershon had hit the post with a header.

But, Iago Aspas teed up Isco to put the shine on an easy win two minutes from time.

 

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