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Buffon celebrates landmark Juve title

Juventus captain Gianluigi Buffon has hailed his teammates' efforts this season after the club clinched a third consecutive Serie A title.

Gianluigi Buffon has made a number of misjudgments this season.
Gianluigi Buffon has been at Juventus since joining from Parma in 2001.

Rzouki: Loss to help Juve grow

Juve have lost just twice all campaign and have won all of their games at home to secure their 30th league championship.

Second-placed Roma crashed to a 4-1 loss at Catania on Sunday to gift the title to the Bianconeri, who have three games remaining, starting with Monday's match against Atalanta.

Their 30th title enhances the club's status as the most dominant team in Italian football history -- pushing them even further clear of AC Milan and Inter Milan, who have each won 18 -- while it is the first time they have ever achieved the feat of three straight championships.

"It's well deserved for the effort and the performances we have had throughout the season,'' Buffon told Sky Italia. "It's always beautiful to win but it is very difficult to repeat the achievements of last season because you need more physical and mental energy.

"It's only right that we celebrate because we've had three thrilling campaigns in which Juve have proved to be dominant. This season we have been fantastic. We have an important group of players and a coach who is very prepared.''

Buffon has already said this season that he is glad he did not leave the club after they were stripped of two league titles in the match-fixing scandal that rocked Italian football in 2006. Juve were also relegated to Serie B as part of the punishment that left the club in disgrace.

"The scudetto we clinched two years ago gave us a lot of joy as it was unexpected and was the first after having suffered in Serie B,'' Buffon said.

While Juve cannot expect a warm reception from Roma fans next weekend when they visit the Stadio Olimpico, Buffon has only praise for the Giallorossi.

"All the football movement should thank them,'' he said. "At times they have been impressive and their strength made us think that we might not win it. A lot of credit must go to them.''

Roma went into their game at Catania on the back of a nine-match winning streak.

"We got everything wrong,'' Roma coach Rudi Garcia said after the loss. "We didn't have the right motivation to do well. I expect a response from my players next weekend against Juve. Our season remains an extraordinary one. We are obviously disappointed but next Sunday we want to win to thank our fans.''

Coach Antonio Conte has been at the helm for each of Juve's three consecutive title wins. The 44-year-old has been the driving force behind a team that can become the first side in Italy to break the 100-point barrier -- they have 93 with three matches left.

"Conte has given us so much satisfaction since his first season in charge,'' Juve general director Giuseppe Marotta said. "He was a great player for Juve and he has been able to transmit his ambition to his players as well as the right motivations.''

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