You were our brave captain - Baresi, Milan and Cagliari lead tributes to Astori
Davide Astori's former clubs AC Milan and Cagliari were joined by Italy great Franco Baresi and former Roma coach Rudi Garcia in paying tribute to the late Fiorentina player.
Astori was found dead in his hotel room on Sunday, prompting the postponement of his team's match away to Udinese and all of the day's other Serie A fixtures.
Capped 14 times by Italy at full international level, the defender was a product of Milan's youth system, the Rossoneri expressing their condolences to Astori's family and his Viola team-mates.
"A man who loved football and who grew up as footballer with us," the club said in a message posted on Twitter.
"AC Milan are shocked by the passing of Davide Astori. It is with great sadness that we offer our deepest condolences to his family and close ones and to ACF Fiorentina."
A man who loved football and who grew up as footballer with us. #ACMilan are shocked by the passing of Davide #Astori . It is with great sadness that we offer our deepest condolences to his family and closed ones and to ACF Fiorentina-- AC Milan (@acmilan) March 4, 2018
Former Milan captain Franco Baresi said he was "speechless" at the tragedy, adding: "I saw you grow up and [was] proud of the path you were taking."
Incredulo, una tragedia sono senza parole, ti ho visto crescere e orgoglioso del percorso che stavi facendo. Mi stringo al dolore della famiglia RIP Davide pic.twitter.com/b6alvSRViV-- Franco Baresi (@FBaresi) March 4, 2018
A move to Cagliari in 2008 saw Astori make his first Serie A appearance and he remained a popular figure with the Rossoblu.
Cagliari tweeted: "With our shirt you have made your dreams come true, you scored in the national team, you were our brave captain, you made yourself loved by our people and you loved our land. Goodbye, Davide."
Con la nostra maglia hai realizzato i tuoi sogni, hai fatto gol in Nazionale, sei stato il nostro capitano coraggioso. Ti sei fatto amare dalla nostra gente e hai amato la nostra terra. Ciao Davide. pic.twitter.com/vyXJIa4ypF-- Cagliari Calcio (@CagliariCalcio) March 4, 2018
Roma, where Astori spent the 2014-15 season on loan, said: "AS Roma joins the pain of the world of football for the passing of David Astori. Shocked by the tragic news, managers, footballers and all the company's employees [share] the pain of his family."
The club is devastated to learn of the death of Davide Astori. The thoughts of everyone at AS Roma are with the player's family, friends and teammates at this terrible and tragic time. pic.twitter.com/vDlL4LIkJr-- AS Roma English (@ASRomaEN) March 4, 2018
Roma's sporting director Monchi reflected on a tragic experience during his time at Sevilla.
The club's Spain international Antonio Puerta passed away in 2007 after suffering a cardiac arrest playing against Getafe in LaLiga.
"I know the suffering, I know how it feels, I know the pain because unfortunately I have lived... with the ill-fated Antonio Puerta," he wrote.
"Much encouragement to his family, his friends and companions, the Fiorentina and all the Italian football."
Sé el sufrimiento, sé lo que se siente, sé el dolor porque lamentablemente lo he vivido en primera persona con el malogrado Antonio Puerta-- Monchi (@leonsfdo) March 4, 2018
Mucho ánimo a su familia, a sus amigos y compañeros, a la Fiorentina y a todo el fútbol italiano. DEP Davide Astori pic.twitter.com/8LbsVjFQ0i
Former Roma coach Rudi Garcia said: "The news of the premature death of my former player Davide Astori grieves me. Professional and exemplary boy... Rest in peace David."
La notizia della prematura scomparsa del mio ex giocatore Davide Astori mi addolora. Professionista e ragazzo esemplare. Sono vicino alla famiglia e ai suoi cari. Riposa in pace Davide. pic.twitter.com/f19D1CeDln-- Rudi Garcia (@RudiGarcia) March 4, 2018
The Italian Football Federation (FIGC) said its thoughts "are with the directors, coaches and staff who knew and respected Davide throughout Italian football, while we also offer our most profound condolences to the Astori family."
The FIGC's thoughts are with the directors, coaches and staff who knew and respected Davide throughout Italian football, while we also offer our most profound condolences to the Astori family. pic.twitter.com/nCQbfmyPwN-- Italy (@azzurri) March 4, 2018