Buffon eyes England switch

MILAN - Italy goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon has sparked a potential transfer scramble by saying he would seek a move to England if Juventus decide to sell him.

Juve are seventh in Serie A after a dreadful season and cashing in on the 32-year-old could help the Turin side rebuild for next season.

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"If I had to go I think England could be the destination," Buffon told Italy's Sky TV on Tuesday.

"My wish to leave Juve is equal to the wish Juve have to let me go. Everything will be agreed with the club. At the moment there is nothing. My priority has always been Juventus. Let's see if we decide to continue together."

England's Manchester City tracked Buffon last year but he was quoted as saying they were not big enough to tempt him despite now being the richest club in the world.

Most other top English clubs have settled goalkeepers.

Media reports say Juventus want Rafael Benitez to replace interim coach Alberto Zaccheroni next season and Buffon praised the Liverpool coach despite his side suffering a similar campaign to Juve.

"His CV speaks for itself. He gives the impression of being a coach who can handle difficult situations, managerial situations," he said after denying Juve had to be rebuilt from scratch.

Buffon, still one of the top goalkeepers in the world despite recent injuries and Juve's poor campaign, was realistic about Italy's hopes of retaining the World Cup in South Africa in July.

"I don't think we have a big chance because we know how difficult it is to win a World Cup, but to repeat it is even harder," Buffon said, adding that Zaccheroni or Fiorentina coach Cesare Prandelli were the best candidates to succeed Italy coach Marcello Lippi.

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