Thousands gather for Italy's global Davide Astori funeral

Thousands gather for Italy's global Davide Astori funeral

The Italy worldwide was found dead in his hotel room on Sunday, ahead of Fiorentina's Serie A match away to Udinese.

The news sent shockwaves through the football industry with all Serie A and Serie B games postponed on the day of his death.

Chiellini after the match said: "We dedicate the win to him".

A post-mortem examination has found he most likely died from a cardiac arrest linked to the slowing of his heart rate.

AS Roma's now-retired attacker Francesco Totti and current Roma player Stephan El Shaarawy were among those who attended the funeral.

These comments riled Balotelli, who played alongside Astori on the worldwide stage with Italy, as he took to a live stream on Instagram to air his thoughts.

A banner for each Serie A club was held up in procession behind Astori's coffin as it left the serviceAstori leaves a wife and a two-year-old daughter.Audio of the service was broadcast to the thousands outside the church, many of whom were in tears."He has always been and will always be a Florentine", said the city's archbishop, Cardinal Giuseppe Betori.

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"As his coffin was carried out of the church, chants of 'there's only one captain" could be heard.

In his post-match interview Wednesday, the 33-year-old told BT Sport: "He is always in our hearts, and tomorrow we go to give the last "ciao" together with our teammates".

Juve and Italy goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon also paid tribute to Astori, who won 14 caps for his national side.

In an Instagram tribute following Astori's death, Buffon wrote: "Your little girl, deserves to know that her father was in all respects a flawless person. Genuine compliments, you were one of the best sporting figures I ever came up against". You're not like others, you are football, the real one, the pure one of children.

Astori spent eight years with Cagliari from 2008 playing 179 times in all competitions before joining Fiorentina in 2016.

"We can not forget your laughter, your way of joking with everyone". I didn't know Davide personally, but my Fiorentina friends had always drawn a splendid picture of him.