AP NEWS

Fiorentina’s squad pays respects to Astori

March 7, 2018

Fiorentina soccer team's players arrive to pay their tribute to their teammate Davide Astori at the Coverciano Sports Center, near Florence, Italy, Wednesday, March 7, 2018. The 31-year-old Astori was found dead in his hotel room on Sunday after a suspected cardiac arrest before his team was set to play an Italian league match at Udinese. (Maurizio Degl'Innocenti/ANSA via AP)

FLORENCE, Italy (AP) — Fiorentina’s squad visited Italy’s national training center in Florence on Wednesday to pay their respects to the body of captain Davide Astori.

The 31-year-old Astori was found dead in his hotel room on Sunday after a suspected cardiac arrest before Fiorentina was set to play an Italian league match at Udinese in northeast Italy.

Astori’s body was brought back Wednesday to Florence and taken to the soccer center on the outskirts of the city. His funeral takes place Thursday at the Basilica di Santa Croce in Florence, Fiorentina’s home city.

The bus carrying the Fiorentina squad was greeted with applause before silence fell as players walked off and into the center’s gym to see Astori’s body.

Astori’s Fiorentina and Italy shirts were laid next to the closed coffin, along with wreaths from Fiorentina, the Italian soccer federation and other football clubs.

Hundreds queued to pay their respects before the doors were opened at 4:30 p.m. local time for a six-hour period.

Other footballers to visit included Roma captain Daniele De Rossi and a delegation from Torino formed of Andrea Belotti, Lorenzo De Silvestri and Adem Ljajic.

AP RADIO
Update hourly