The Azzurri must avoid defeat in Natal if they want to make it through to the second round of the tournament.
With their place in the last 16 far from secure, Buffon hopes that the Italians can stay focused and get the result that they need to progress.
"Now, we have to send some positive signals and the only way to do that is to raise our game against Uruguay," he told FIFA.com.
"We need to show some strength and pride and come up with a win. We need cool heads but also to be highly motivated. If we end up going out in the first round, it will be a failure."
Italy head into the match on the back of last Friday's surprise 1-0 defeat to Costa Rica.