2017 African Player of the Year, Mohamed Salah led a team of African stars including Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Ahmed Hegazi, Andre Ayew, Keita Balde in expressing their condolences following Davide Astori's tragic death at the age of 31.
"This is a tragedy and it really hurts me".
ANSA, the Italian news wire, reported Astori died of "cardiocirculatory arrest" while staying with his Fiorentina teammates at the Best Western Hotel Là di Moret in Udine. "He was only 31 and it's very hard to explain this situation". It's very hard in this moment to speak about this tragedy. "He was a great player, especially a fantastic guy". I stay close to his wife, parents and daughter.
Astori's body was taken to a hospital in Udine for an autopsy.
Astori made his Italy debut in 2011 and played at the 2013 Confederations Cup in Brazil where he scored against Uruguay.
Torino subsequently announced that their fixture with Crotone would not go ahead before the Lega Serie A confirmed that all of the weekend's remaining fixtures, including the Milan city derby on Sunday evening, had been postponed.
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Astori scored his only global goal in the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup third-place playoff against Uruguay in Salvador, giving Italy a first-half lead in a match which finished 2-2.
"Given this bad and delicate situation we appeal to everyone's sensitivity at this time, above all out of respect for his family".
Italian soccer has more stringent rules and tests than many other countries, with professional athletes in Italy required to undergo certain checks every six months.
Radja Nainggolan, a Belgian global who played with Astori at two clubs, posted a photo of the two of them joyously celebrating a goal at Cagliari.
"A man who loved football and who grew up as a footballer with us".
"How many battles we were in together at Cagliari, then found each other again at Roma I still can't believe it".
The sudden death of Astori left the football fraternity in shock. "Goodbye captain", said former Italian prime minister Matteo Renzi.
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