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I thought about going on holiday but Italy need me – Buffon confirms international return

Italy great Gianluigi Buffon is coming out of retirement after making himself available for March's international friendlies against Argentina and England.

Juventus veteran Buffon, 40, announced his international retirement after Italy's failure to qualify for this year's World Cup in Russia following their shock play-off defeat to Sweden in November.

Italy caretaker head coach Luigi Biagio said he expected the country's record caps-holder Buffon to return next month, when the Azzurri face Argentina in Manchester on March 23 before taking on England at Wembley four days later.

And Buffon confirmed his plans to help the national team, who failed to qualify for the World Cup for the first time since 1958.

"I feel a sense of responsibility at this time of transition for our national team," Buffon told 'Tiki Taka' on Italia 1.

"There will be two important friendly matches, I thought about going on holiday with my family, but if the national team needs me I have to answer that I am ready and I cannot desert.

"I do this for loyalty and responsibility, without thinking about what will be my future.

"The players who have experience at the moment could be useful against Argentina and England."

Buffon has made 13 Serie A appearances for reigning champions Juve this season and 20 across all competitions.