Davide Astori: Thousands gather for funeral of Fiorentina captai

Davide Astori: Thousands gather for funeral of Fiorentina captai

Astori's funeral was held at the Basilica di Santa Croce in Florence and thousands of fans packed the streets and the city's main square.

Referring to Astori's young daughter, he added: "Those of us remain will have the duty of telling your princess, Vittoria, who you were, Davide: a man with a capital M".

"You are football; pure football that kids play".

"I want to send all my condolences to Davide Astori and all the people that love him and I think it's a massive tragedy", Pochettino told reporters.

Indeed, as the Captain was carried out of the church in his coffin with a guard of honour formed by children from the youth sector, the fans raised their scarves aloft and let off a myriad of flares as they sang their anthem in unison.

Astori's mother blew a kiss to the crowd, while the people of Florence were also thanked by his brother Marco in his eulogy.

Whether the footballing community - and, more importantly, Astori's friends and family - will accept Alves's apology remains to be seen. When the awful news arrived of the death of our captain, I had the same reaction: I was in shock, speechless, for a death without an answer.

Davide Astori: Thousands gather for funeral of Fiorentina captai

"A footballer who dies in his sleep - it's something incredible, inexplicable and unacceptable. A trauma that affects the community and, particularly, our world".

"I had the possibility to meet him five years ago because it was my idea to sign him when we were at Southampton".

BC-SOC-Astori-Funeral, 5th Ld-Writethru, 563 Thousands gather for funeral of Fiorentina captain AstoriAP Photo XAP120, XAP110, XAP123, ALT119, xap104, XAP124, xap116, xap113, xap111, xap109, xap105, xap107, xap106, xap141, xap139Eds: Updates with more detail. It was very hard during the match because we had to think of the game and the outcome, and it's not easy.

"Tomorrow we go to give the last ciao (goodbye) together with our teammates".

Speaking after the game, an emotional Chiellini dedicated the win to Astori.

Astori's body will be transferred to his birth town of San Pellegrino Terme, where he will be laid to rest on Friday.

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