Morata praises Buffon ahead of Spain-Italy

Gianluigi Buffon

Spain striker Alvaro Morata holds Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon in very high regard as the two nations prepare to meet on Saturday.

La Roja and the Azzurri will be playing for top spot in Group G of World Cup qualifying when they meet at Santiago Bernabeu, where the Chelsea striker will be looking to score past his former Juventus teammate.

“He and Casillas for me have been the two best goalkeepers in history,” Morata told El Pais. “It’s hard to repeat two guys like that.

“Even if they don’t have the strength or agility they had before, they impose on you one-on-one.

“Buffon always anticipates. After more than 20 years as a professional, he knows the movements and thoughts of the forwards.”

One former Juve teammate that Morata will not have to deal with is Giorgio Chiellini, who misses out due to injury.

Morata described coming up against Chiellini as “like you’re being put in a cage with a gorilla and you have to steal his food”.

“I think that the few times I have scored against him have been inside the area. It is impossible to win a one-on-one with Chiellini, or he’s holding you.”