Former Italy and AC Milan head-coach and defender Cesare Maldini has passed away, aged 84 according to a report in BBC Sport.
AC Milan put out a statement on their website, mourning the loss of the legend, a "true Milanista".
"The club president Silvio Berlusconi and the rest of the club will always remember fondly his charisma, kindness and warm smile. The club sends its condolences to the Maldini family and the loss of such a key figure in Rossoneri history has left everyone at AC Milan moved and saddened," the statement on the club website read.
AC Milan also tweeted an image of Maldini holding Milan's maiden European Cup, and called his death a "loss of a page in their history".
Goodbye dear Cesare. Today the world loses a great man and we lose a page of our history. You will be missed. pic.twitter.com/2OFgVCQiaz
— AC Milan (@acmilan) April 3, 2016
Maldini won the Serie-A title in his debut season with Milan in the 1954-55 season, and went on to to appear 412 times for the Rossoneri, winning the Scudetto four times. He also captained the club to its first European Cup in 1963 at the hallowed Wembley.
Football runs in the Maldini family. Cesare's son, Paulo, too went on to become an AC Milan and Italy legend and is widely regarded as one of the greatest defenders of all time. Cesare's grandsons, Christian and Daniel, too play football for Milan at the junior level.
Maldini went on to coach the Azzuri in 1996, with his son serving as the captain of the team. Under the father-son duo, Italy reached the quarter-finals of the 1998 World Cup, losing out to hosts and eventual winners France on penalties.
First Published On : Apr 3, 2016 16:24 IST