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Five memorable moments of Andrea Pirlo’s career

There have been quite a lot of memorable occasions in Pirlo’s career, but on his 41st birthday, we bring you five for which he will always be remembered.

Last updated: 18.05.2020
Five memorable moments of Andrea Pirlo career | Sports Social Blog

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Andrea Pirlo officially retired from football in 2017, bringing an end to his wildly successful 22-year footballing career. The Juventus and Milan legend celebrates his 41st birthday today.

Pirlo made his first-team debut at Brescia against Reggiana at 16 years of age. He stayed at Brescia till 1997-98 season and then joined Inter. He had a loan spell at Brescia where manager Mazzone used him as a deep-lying playmaker for the first time. He signed for AC Milan in 2001 and it is here, Ancelotti used him in the deep playmaking position regularly. Juventus signed Pirlo on a free transfer in 2011. Conte started playing him in a three-man midfield alongside Arturo Vidal and Marchisio. This allowed Pirlo to continue his role as a deep-lying playmaker. He joined MLS side New York City in 2015 and hang up his boots in 2017.

There have been quite a lot of memorable occasions in Pirlo’s career, but on his 41st birthday, we bring you five for which he will always be remembered.


5. Panenka Penalty against England – 2012 Euros quarter-final

Italy faced England in the 2012 Euros quarter-final. The game ended in a goalless draw after extra-time and went into penalties. With Montolivo having missed the penalty prior to Pirlo, the Italian was under great pressure. Joe Hart tried to intimidate the Italian but Pirlo stood calm and composed. He then took the run-up and chipped a panenka over Joe Hart to make a mockery out of his intimidation attempts. After his penalty, England missed their next two penalties and crashed out of the tournament.

4. 40-yard screamer against Parma – 2010

Pirlo has been deadly from dead balls throughout his career. However, he has also scored some aesthetically-pleasing goals. One of his best goals came against Parma in 2010 when he opened the scoring for AC Milan from close to 40 yards out, hitting the top right corner of the net. He took a small run-up before scoring the rising shot that was always out of reach for the Parma goalkeeper. Don't forget to watch Ronaldinho's reaction.

3. Iconic 35-yard assist for Baggio – Brescia 2000-01 season

Pirlo played in his deep-lying playmaker role for the first time at Brescia during his loan stint. Here he provided an amazing 35-yard assist for Baggio to collect, dribble past the goalkeeper and score. Even today, Roberto Baggio admits that his favourite goal was the one he scored in 2001 for Brescia against Juventus.

2. Free-kick against Mexico at Maracana – 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup

Pirlo has scored a lot of beautiful freekicks throughout his career. However, the one he scored against Mexico at the iconic Maracana Stadium stands out because it was his 100th cap for the Azzurri. The freekick paved the way for Italy to a 2-1 win over Mexico at the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup. What a way to celebrate his 100th international cap for Italy!

1. Assist for Grosso – 2006 FIFA World Cup semis

Italy and Germany faced each other in the semi-finals of the 2006 World Cup. Both teams had a fair share of chances to score but Buffon kept the Italians in the game and post did the work for the Germans. However, Pirlo had other plans and he forced Germany to make a save from a shot out of the box. It led to a corner which began the move for Italy’s first goal of the game. Pirlo caught the German defence by setting up Fabio Grosso for the goal. Italy went on to win the tournament.

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