Buffon: Balotelli would fit in at Juventus

The Bianconeri goalkeeper has admitted the controversial former Inter forward would be a success if he signed for the newly-crowned Italian champions

Gianluigi Buffon has admitted that temperamental Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli would fit in at Juventus.

The Etihad Stadium forward has been linked with a move back to his homeland this summer, and his international team-mate feels he would be a success in Turin.

“Would Balotelli fit in at Juve? I’d see him do well here, as he’d fit in with all the strongest teams in the world,” Buffon told Sky Sport Italia.

“He has potential and now we can say a little more than that, because he also proved in many occasions that he can decide a game.

“If Mario came to Juventus he’d certainly become an idol for the fans. He is one of those characters who are in certain ways denigrated – even hated – by opposition fans, but is idolised by his own supporters.”

The Bianconeri lifted the Serie A title with an unbeaten campaign in 2011-12, and Buffon has been quick to herald the impact of coach Antonio Conte.

“The coach has been put at the centre of the project with his beliefs and his knowledge of Juve. In general you can never tell quite how much a coach affects a team, but I can say with certainty that our tactician has made a huge impact, more than anyone else, on this campaign.

“It was possible because the team and club wanted to follow him.”

Finally, Buffon praised outgoing attacker Alessandro Del Piero, who will leave the Turin side this summer.

“We lose a lot without Alex. First of all I am losing a friend and a companion. We were together for 11-12 years and they were full of incidents, good and less good. There is enormous disappointment to be saying goodbye, as more than ever this year he has shown how he helps the Juve cause.

“There was never a moment in which we heard him complain, as he always trained hard and set an example to the squad. In fact, he scored three or four goals that proved to be decisive,” Buffon concluded.