Gianluigi Buffon: Gennaro Gattuso ‘got his education’ from Rangers

Rangers FC

Buffon believes that Rangers were the reason Gattuso became such a good player.

Quoted by the Daily Record, Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon has admitted that Gennaro Gattuso became the player he was due to the experiences he had with Rangers.

The Juventus stopper, who will play in the 2015 Champions League Final, said: “Rino always joked he got his education in Glasgow. There was truth in it. Anybody who has played against Celtic or Rangers knows how physical they can be and players don’t come more physical than Rino.

“We all loved him but he could be scary sometimes and I am sure playing in Scotland made him the player he turned into.”

Gattuso spent just one full season with the Gers, making 40 appearances in the 1997/98 season under the leadership of Walter Smith. His highly energetic play was already on show then, and playing for the Light Blues just further developed his terrier-like style of play.

However, he departed Ibrox the following season, when Dick Advocaat followed Smith as manager, and played Gattuso out of position - as a right-back.

He ended up moving to Salernitana for one campaign, before signing to AC Milan, and going on to win a wealth of honours, including two Champions Leagues, the Club World Cup, and the 2006 World Cup.

It was his incessant ball-winning ability in the midfield that ensured his career progressed as it did, and meant that he got by alongside much more talented teammates.

Gattuso may not have started his career with Rangers, but it was where he had his big breakthrough, and Buffon is correct to highlight the influence the Scottish club had on his development.

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch