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The midfielder stamped a century of Azzurri games with a brilliant goal at the Maracana and took time to celebrate his achievements

Andrea Pirlo could not hide his delight at reaching his 100th cap for Italy after scoring during their 2-1 Confederations Cup victory over Mexico at the Maracana on Sunday.

The midfielder became only the fifth player to reach the milestone for the Azzurri and marked the occasion with a stunning free kick to open the scoring in the first half.

“First of all, it’s really rewarding for me,” the 34-year-old told reporters.

“It’s not something everyone does. It’s a great feeling to get 100 caps and to score, especially in a historic stadium like the Maracana. I could only have dreamed of this as a child."

But Pirlo was not ready to look at the landmark as the beginning of the end of his international career, and maintained that he still had much to accomplish in an Italy shirt before hanging up his boots.

“I was lucky enough to get 100 caps for Italy, but it’s not over yet,” revealed Pirlo. "I have other objectives, including winning the Confederations Cup.”

Pirlo joins Fabio Cannavaro, Gianluigi Buffon, Paolo Maldini and Dino Zoff as the other Italy centurions, but was the quickest out of the five to reach the landmark.

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