Thousands Gather In Florence For Astori's Funeral

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Chiellini, Claudio Marchisio, Daniele Rugani, Mattia De Sciglio, Miralem Pjanic and coach Massimiliano Allegri arriving on a charter flight from London following Juventus' victory over Tottenham Hotspur in the Champions League on Wednesday night.

Astori's family arrived along with the hearse, including his partner, Francesca Fioretti, and their 2-year-old daughter, Vittoria.

Italian worldwide Astori passed away from a cardiac arrest, aged just 31, this past weekend and was found dead in his hotel room just hours before a scheduled match against Udinese.

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About a thousand people gathered at Fiorentina's stadium to see Astori's funeral cortege wind around the ground before heading off to the funeral in the basilica of Santa Croce, where some 10,000 people had crammed the church and square outside it.

And on Thursday, Croatia global Badelj eloquently expressed the pain the Fiorentina squad will feel at the absence of their captain. You would be a son or brother that every one of us would like to have if we could choose. Your mother, your father must know that they did not make a mistake with you.

Fiorentina's supporters pay homage to Fiorentina's captain Davide Astori as his coffin is carried out of Santa Croce basilica at the end of the funeral on March 8, 2018 in Florence.

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"You were the best expression of an old-fashioned world, in which values such as altruism, elegance, education and respect for others, were the masters. You are the light for all of us".

Fiorentina fans wait outside the church during the funeral ceremony of Italian player Davide Astori.

The defender, who also played 14 times for Italy, was discovered by Fiorentina staff when he failed to show up for breakfast at the hotel in Udine. Among the attendees were players and officials of Fiorentina as well as figures from clubs across Italy.

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All last weekend matches were postponed while Fiorentina and former club Cagliari have retired the Italian's No. 13 jersey.

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