Experience the key - Buffon
By James Pearson
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Italy international keeper Gianluigi Buffon is backing the Azzurri to succeed in Euro 2004 due to their superior player experience.
Stars such as Christian Vieri, Francesco Totti and Alessandro Del Piero have seen it all before, and Buffon believes their knowledge will pay dividends in Portugal.
"Surely we are in a group with opponents that can be insidious, but that surely aren't the strongest of the tournament," said Buffon.
"Italy can win because we are an experienced team, with a solid group and big class' players, like Vieri, Totti and Del Piero".
The Juventus keeper stated the team were at sixes and sevens after the 2002 World Cup, following their shock exit to South Korea in the 2002 World Cup.
"After the World Cup, for a couple of months it seemed we had lost ourselves. It seemed coach (Giovanni) Trapattoni didn't have the situation under control," he added.
"It seemed necessary a miracle to achieve Portugal, probably after play-offs. Instead at the end, with a little luck and our skill we have been able to recover and obtain qualification."