Fiorentina, Cagliari Retire Number 13 Shirt In Honour Of Late Astori

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Fiorentina, Cagliari Retire Number 13 Shirt In Honour Of Late Astori

31 year professional footballer David Astori who was the captain for Italian Serie A club Fiorentina FC has reportedly died in his sleep.

Former Italy coach Antonio Conte and World Cup victor Gianluigi Buffon paid emotional tributes to Astori, describing their Italian compatriot as "fantastic" and "a great guy".

But the pain felt and the tears cried for the Captain of my team was real on Sunday morning, a feeling of loss that I will never forget.

Astori, who joined the club from Cagliari in 2016, was found after failing to turn up for breakfast ahead of Fiorentina's Serie A match against Udinese.

Astori also earned 14 caps, or global match appearances, for the Italian national team. "He was a great player, especially a fantastic guy". I stay close to his wife, parents and daughter. "It's very hard to explain this situation".

"Ciao dear Asto", Buffon wrote on Instagram.

Buffon said he did not usually make a habit of expressing his feelings about others.

"For now, it's been brought against unknown persons".

The news of Astori's death spread just when Genoa and Cagliari were preparing to play their early afternoon clash and this video shows a touching moment players of both clubs were told the awful news.

This weekend's Serie A games, apart from the three fixtures already played on Saturday, were postponed out of respect.

The Romania global shot-stopper is a former team-mate of the 31-year-old, who passed away prior to a Serie A fixture against Udinese scheduled for Sunday.

"We have opened a manslaughter investigation, against X for the moment", Udine magistrate Antonio de Nicolo told Rai radio on Monday, adding that such a procedure was "mandatory".

Led by coach Stefano Pioli, the Fiorentina squad gathered at the gates of the Artemio Franchi stadium where the team play their home games and placed a picture of Astori alongside the banners, scarves and messages previously left by fans.

Never quite considered a superstar-level player, Astori nevertheless made 14 appearances for the Azzurri. He got on the field in March 2011 for a friendly against Ukraine, which Italy won 2-0.

Astori scored his only global goal in the 2013 Confederations Cup third-place play-off against Uruguay, giving Italy a first-half lead in a match which finished 2-2.

There is no doubt that he will be remembered in the most special of ways by the Viola supporters, fans who are notorious for valuing heartfelt pride in the city of Florence and the football team above anything else. #ACMilan are shocked by the passing of Davide #Astori.

The club said on Twitter that his funeral would take place in Florence on Thursday and European soccer body UEFA said there would be a minute's silence before all of this week's Champions League and Europa League matches.

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