Andrea Pirlo and Roberto Baggio are players that fans will wax lyrical about for many years to come.
The two silky Italians made the game look so easy in their prime and will forever rank as two of the greatest footballers of all-time.
Baggio’s performances at the 1994 World Cup were eerily reminiscent of Diego Maradona’s virtuoso displays in 1986 and it was criminal that it was his penalty that cost Italy in the final against Brazil.
In 2001, the pony-tailed forward was winding down his glittering career with Brescia in Serie A, which saw him lineup alongside a young Pirlo.
Pirlo was on a six-month loan at the club he had spent three years at previously between 1995 and 1998, but in that short space of time he was able to create a true masterpiece with Baggio.
Against Juventus, the two geniuses combined for one of the sauciest goals you will ever see at any level.
The lofted pass from Pirlo was inch-perfect and the first-touch from Baggio can only be described as some kind of sorcery. Edwin van der Sar in the Juve goal was truly dumbfounded.
It’s hard to think of any way that goal could be more simplistically beautiful. Proof that you don’t need fancy flicks and tricks to create footballing art.
Pirlo’s career was dramatically changed for the better during his short loan spell with Brescia, because it was where he was transformed from an attacking midfielder into a deep-lying playmaker.
Manager Carlo Mazzone was the architect behind the ground-breaking change in position, which allowed Pirlo and Baggio to operate in tandem to devastating effect.
In the summer of 2001, Pirlo was duly sold by parent club Inter Milan to city rivals AC and the rest – as they say – is history.
As for Baggio, he would continue with Brescia until his retirement in 2004 and his record for the club stands at 46 goals in just 101 games.
Not bad for a player in his late 30s and it’s no coincidence that they were relegated from Serie A the season after his departure!
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