Buffon reveals depression battle and admits he must “rediscover joy of living”

Gianluigi Buffon has revealed he needed to “rediscover the joy of living” to help his fight with depression.

The Italy and Juventus goalkeeping legend said: “It’s not an evil which disappears overnight, just as it doesn’t appear from one day to the next.”

Buffon, now 40, had previously admitted he had suffered a panic attack ahead of a game against Reggina in 2005.

Quoted in a new book, he recalled: “Nobody noticed, and in that moment I felt even more alone. I went onto the pitch, but I relied on my pride and my love for my work and I decided not to give up.

“I said to myself: ‘If you take the easy way out, if you don’t go onto the pitch, then you’ll always do that’.

“I stayed on the pitch and after a few minutes I made a save from [Francesco] Cozza. We won the game 1-0 and it was like electroshock therapy for me.

“I was handsome, rich and famous and I wondered why it had never happened before.

“Why at that moment? Why not later? I saved myself through my pride. One day I went to the art gallery in Turin and I fell in love with a painting by Chagall, ‘La Passeggiata’.

“I realised that little things could help me and I could rediscover the joy of living. I went back the next day to look at the painting again. You need patience.”

Buffon, who was sent off in his final Champions League appearance by Michael Oliver, is in talks to join Paris Saint-Germain.

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