Gianluigi Buffon and Andrea Pirlo pay touching tribute to Davide Astori
He was a much loved man
The footballing world was rocked this morning by the news that Fiorentina captain Davide Astori had passed away during the night.
He died following a "sudden illness" according to the club's official Twitter page. All Serie A fixtures this weekend have been postponed.
He was only 31, he was a father and a clearly touched many lives. Tributes from former teammates, coaches and other footballing figures have been pouring in since the news broke.
Juventus captain and Italy legend Gianluigi Buffon, paid tribute on Instagram, saying:
"You have a young wife and family members who are suffering. Your little girl deserves to know that her father was in all respects a perfect person. You were the best expression of an ancient, surpassed world, in which values such as altruism, elegance, education and respect for others, were the masters.
"You were one of the best sports figures I came across."
Andrea Pirlo also expressed his condolences via social media.
"Without words.. In the end they always take the best... good trip my friend. RIP"
Senza parole.. alla fine se ne vanno sempre i migliori... buon viaggio amico mio. RIP ❤️ pic.twitter.com/BHwH5abZZ6
— Andrea Pirlo (@Pirlo_official) March 4, 2018
Antonio Conte was asked about his relationship with Astori in his pre-match interview with Sky Sports today. Having coached Astori during his time with the Italian national team, Conte knew him well. "He was a great player, but especially a fantastic guy."
WATCH: Antonio Conte's touching tribute to Fiorentina captain, Davide Astori, who he managed when with the national team. 😪👏🇮🇹 pic.twitter.com/UhYTqrV0UB
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) March 4, 2018
Former Manchester City and Fiorentina manager Roberto Mancini also paid tribute. He said: "I learned with great pain what happened to Davide Astori. My condolences to the family."
Football lost a great player, a gentleman, a leader and by all accounts a loving family man today, at the tender age of 31.