For all the negative headlines and flack that the FIGC and Serie A received as of late, today’s postponement of all the remaining games for Matchday 27 was absolutely the right move.
This morning the world of Italian soccer woke to the horrible news that current Fiorentina defender and captain, Davide Astori, had passed away in his sleep during the night. The team had been in Udine for an away match against Udinese to be played this afternoon.
Formerly a player for Cagliari, AS Roma, and also the National side, Davide Astori was a solid central defender who was well respected throughout the league as well as internationally. His height and physical stature made him a dominating presence as a defenseman inside of his own 18-yard box and his leadership skills will most certainly be missed in Florence going forward.
For all the clubs involved in today’s decision, 14 squads in total, it must have been a terribly difficult situation. However, the league’s ultimate conclusion regarding the matches on Sunday, March 4th, made as a collective family of teams and players, was the best decision.
Serie A has always been one of the tightest and most familial leagues of all the European soccer organizations. The FIGC showed great class and respect in regards to today’s choice to keep the players off the pitches throughout Italy’s highest division of soccer. This choice offered the teams and players of the Serie A the opportunity to pay the ultimate respect to a great Italian player.
For Italian soccer fans worldwide, it is decisions like these that make the league such a special part of our lives and the reason why we follow it so passionately. If nothing else, we as fans are able to take these small victories over some of the bigger clouds that have been casting a shadow over the league as a whole and put the league in the beautiful light it always deserves to be in. Ultimately, it makes us remember that deep down, Italians are some of the most loving people in the world, especially when it comes to their love for Calcio and it’s players. Something I believe is rarely matched elsewhere on the global level.
RIP Davide Astori, (January 7, 1987 – March 4, 2018)