Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE DEBATE

Erdogan Almighty: Turkey elections hand president enhanced powers

Read more

ENCORE!

L'Impératrice: The empress of Parisian pop music

Read more

FOCUS

East Germany's stolen babies

Read more

PERSPECTIVE

Turkey's ambassador to France reacts to Erdogan's re-election

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

'Two thirds of victims of human trafficking in Europe are EU nationals'

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

A new stance on immigration? Europe's latest tussle over migrants

Read more

IN THE PRESS

Meet Zsa Zsa the English bulldog, the world's ugliest dog

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

'Turkey is a very weak state which looks very strong'

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

The Moroccan teacher improving his pupils' lives; and Turkey's violent crackdown on students

Read more

Sports

Sudden death of Fiorentina captain Davide Astori at 31 shocks Italy

© Patrik Stollarz, AFP | This file photo taken on February 16, 2017, shows Fiorentina's Davide Astori (L) reacting after a match against Borussia Moenchengladbach in western Germany.

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2018-03-04

Fiorentina captain and defender Davide Astori died of a sudden illness on Sunday morning at the age of 31, the Serie A club said, leaving Italian football in a state of shock.

Serie A announced that all of Sunday's matches, including the derby between AC Milan and Inter Milan, would be postponed.

"Fiorentina is deeply upset to have to announce that its captain Davide Astori has passed away, victim of a sudden illness," said Fiorentina's statement.

"Due to the terrible and delicate situation, and above all for the respect of his family, an appeal is made to everyone's sensibility."

Italian media said that Astori was found dead in his hotel room in Udine, where Fiorentina had been due to face Udinese at the Dacia Arena later on Sunday.

The Fiorentina staff became worried when Astori did not join his team mates for breakfast at around 9.30 am local time, local media reported.

Astori, who was in his 10th season as a Serie A player and made 289 top flight appearances, joined Fiorentina on loan in August 2015 and the club signed him outright one year later. He previously spent six seasons at Cagliari and one on loan at AS Roma.

He made 14 appearances for Italy between 2012 and 2017 and was in the squad at the Confederations Cup in 2013 where Italy finished third.

"It seems impossible. I'm in a state of disbelief and I cry with his family and all for Fiorentina. Goodbye captain," said former Italy Prime Minister Matteo Renzi.

In announcing the postponement of Sunday's games, Serie A said: "Shocked by the tragic news, the whole family of the Lega Serie A unites around the family of Davide Astori and Fiorentina FC."

AC Milan coach Gennaro Gattuso had asked before the announcement for all games to be called off. "I can't think of the derby after a tragedy like that," he said on Twitter.

The teams were already on the pitch and warming up for the lunchtime match between Genoa and Cagliari when news broke of Astori's death.

Fans applauded when Astori's picture was shown on the stadium screen and left in silence when it was announced that the game would not go ahead.

Other Serie A and European clubs and dozens of players sent messages of condolence as did federations such as European soccer body UEFA and global soccer body FIFA, and the global players' union FIFPro.

"On this day of tragedy, Juventus expresses its deepest condolences to Davide Astori’s family and Fiorentina," said Serie A champions Juventus.

(AFP)

Date created : 2018-03-04

  • FOOTBALL

    FIFA hails 'new era for football' in approving video review ahead of World Cup

    Read more

  • FOOTBALL

    PSG cruise to 3-0 cup win over Marseille despite Neymar's absence

    Read more

  • SPORT

    PSG’s Neymar to be operated in Brazil, skips Madrid clash

    Read more

COMMENT(S)