Italy international and Fiorentina captain Davide Astori has died suddenly in his sleep. He was found dead in a hotel room, Sunday, after he did not turn up for breakfast or answer his phone.
The Gigliati were at Udine for a Serie A game which has now been postponed due to the sad incident.
The 31-year-old father of one is believed to have died of “cardio-circulatory arrest due to natural causes” – a type of heart attack – but he showed “no warning signs” of having any illness, said Udine prosecutor Antonio De Nicolo.
Club spokesman Arturo Mastronardi said: “The lad did not turn up to the team breakfast at 9.30am and he was usually the first to arrive.
“So they went to check on him. Davide was sleeping in a room on his own. The body has been taken for an autopsy, which I think will be conducted today.”
A club statement read: “A profoundly shocked Fiorentina are compelled to announce that their captain Davide Astori, who was struck by an unexpected sudden illness, has passed away.
“For this terrible and delicate situation, and above all out of respect for his family, we appeal to the sensitivity of the media.”
All seven of today’s fixtures in the Italian top flight have been postponed as a mark of respect.
Astori leaves behind a daughter Vittoria and long-term girlfriend Francesca.