Investigation opened into Davide Astori's death in Italy as Fiorentina call for silence after 'fake news' story

Rome: An autopsy into the death of Fiorentina captain Davide Astori will be carried out on Tuesday while his funeral will be held in Florence two days later, the Italian football club announced.

Italy was in shock following the sudden death on Sunday of the 31-year-old defender who played for his country 14 times.

A banner reading in Italian "So long captain" is hung outside the Artemio Franchi stadium to honor Davide Astori. AP

A banner reading in Italian "So long captain" is hung outside the Artemio Franchi stadium to honor Davide Astori. AP

"Fiorentina and Davide's family inform you that the autopsy will be performed tomorrow... The funeral will take place on Thursday in the Santa Croce basilica," the Serie A club said Monday on its Twitter account.

A judicial inquiry had been launched following the death of the player, who was found dead in his hotel room in Udine, where his team was due to play Udinese on Sunday.

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

De Nicolo was quoted Sunday as saying Astori died of "natural causes" after a "cardiac circulatory collapse" -- a type of heart attack.

Meanwhile Fiorentina have called for respect and silence after it was erroneously reported they had extended Astori's contract with them.

Giovanni Malago who is president of the Italian Olympic Committee, which oversees Italian top flight and international football, "spoke too soon," a source very close to those concerned told AFP.

All seven matches in Italy's top flight on Sunday were postponed following the news of Astori's death.

European games in the Champions League and Europa League will all be preceded by a minute's silence in midweek.

Dario Nardella, the mayor of Florence, said the city would observe a day of mourning for the player's funeral.

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

Chelsea manager Conte, who coached the defender when his was in charge of Italy, said the player's death was a "tragedy".

"This is a tragedy and it really hurts me. It's very difficult at this moment to find the right words for the family," Conte told Sky Sports on Sunday ahead of his side's 1-0 loss to Manchester City.

Veteran Buffon, the Juventus captain, called Astori "a great man".

Buffon, who wrote in a post on Instagram accompanied by a photo of the two players exchanging pennants before a game between their clubs, said he did not usually make a habit of expressing his feelings about others.

"I want to make an exception to my rule because you have a young wife and others close to you who are suffering, but mostly because your little girl deserves to know that her dad was a good man... a great man," Buffon said of Astori, who leaves behind a wife and a two-year-old daughter.

Astori began his career at AC Milan, also playing for Cagliari and Roma before joining Fiorentina in 2015.

He made his international debut under coach Cesare Prandelli in March 2011 as a first-half substitute in a 2-0 victory over Ukraine in Kiev before getting sent off with 17 minutes remaining.

Astori scored his only international 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. Italy went on to win on penalties.


Updated Date: Mar 06, 2018 15:27 PM

Also Watch

Watch: The true stories from Dharavi that inspired Rajinikanth's Kaala
  • Thursday, March 8, 2018 Watch: Cyrus Khan talks about Parkour, jumping across walls and why he hates sitting
  • Thursday, May 31, 2018 Unwind: India's basketball sensation Amjyot Singh has his eyes set on becoming an NBA regular
  • Monday, May 28, 2018 First Day First Showsha — Review of Solo: A Star Wars Story in 10 questions
  • Saturday, May 19, 2018 Social Media Star: Rajkummar Rao and Bhuvan Bam open up about selfie culture, online trolls

Also See