Andrea Pirlo Ufficiale OMRI (Italian pronunciation: ; born 19 May 1979) is an Italian former professional footballer. Pirlo was usually deployed as a deep-lying playmaker in midfield for both his club and national teams and he is widely regarded as one of the greatest ever exponents of this position due to his vision, ball control, technique, creativity and passing ability, as well as for being a free-kick specialist.
Pirlo began his club career as an attacking midfielder with his hometown club Brescia, whom he helped win a Serie B title and subsequent promotion to Serie A in 1997. His promising performances led to a move to Inter Milan in 1998, but he struggled to gain playing time at his new club, and was sent on loan in 1999. Despite successful spells with Reggina and a return to Brescia, Pirlo was still unable to break into Inter's starting line-up and was sold to cross-city rivals A.C. Milan in 2001. At Milan, manager Carlo Ancelotti decided to transition Pirlo into a deep-lying playmaker to orchestrate the team's attacks. Pirlo excelled in his new role and soon developed into a world-class midfielder, and won a plethora of trophies, including two UEFA Champions Leagues, two UEFA Super Cups, two Serie A titles, a FIFA Club World Cup, a Supercoppa Italiana, and a Coppa Italia. After joining Juventus on a free transfer in 2011, who had gone trophyless since 2003, he added four more Serie A titles, which he won consecutively, as well as two Supercoppa Italiana titles, and a Coppa Italia. After playing in Italy for over 20 seasons, Pirlo joined Major League Soccer franchise New York City in 2015, helping the team to reach the playoffs in his second and third seasons before retiring in 2017.