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Paolo Maldini sets himself new targets

Paolo Maldini celebrated his 39th birthday on 26 June. Yet despite his advanced age for a footballer, the Milan-born player still shows no signs of wanting to devote more time to his family, enter coaching or take up another career. In fact he recently signed a one-year contract extension with AC Milan for what will be his 23rd season as a professional and his 23rd season for the club! “I want to break another two records,” explained Maldini when asked about his new deal. The left-back aims to become the first player to feature in nine UEFA Champions League of European Cup finals. After Milan’s latest success in Europe’s premier club competition (a 2-1 win over Liverpool in Athens) Maldini has eight final appearances to his name, the same as Spanish legend Fransisco Gento (Real Madrid). Maldini is also out to win the FIFA Club World Cup in Japan this December, having already lifted the Toyota Cup twice with Milan. “As far as I know, no player has ever won the Club World Cup three times,” he said. “If I achieve that, I can end my career with an easy mind.” And if not? Will Italy’s most capped player (126 international appearances) carry on for another season?