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“I lost a brother”: Roberto Mancini’s tribute to his friend Gianluca Vialli

He joined Roberto Mancini’s Italian staff in 2019, even though he was already battling pancreatic cancer. Gianluca Vialli died on Friday, only a year and a half after being part of the management of the Italian team, winner of the Euro.

“He played a decisive role in winning the European title. The players loved him. Gianluca brought us a courage that we did not know and that he used to fight illness, ”recalls coach Roberto Mancini in the columns of Corriere dello Sport.

“A perfect and courageous man”

“A few days after Sinisa’s farewell (Mihajlovic, December 16), I lost another brother. And even a little brother, as I liked to call him, because we met at 16 and never left each other,” recalls Mancini, who describes Gianluca Vialli as a “perfect and courageous man”.

“All this way together: the youth teams of Italy, the national team, Sampdoria, the joys, the sorrows, the victories and the defeats. And then the two evenings at Wembley, ”adds the Azzurri coach. First the Champions League final lost with Sampdoria in 1992 against Barcelona as players, then the Euro final won in 2021 at the head of the Italian team.

Beyond Roberto Mancini, all of Italian football pays tribute to Gianluca Vialli. A minute’s silence will be observed ahead of Serie A Matchday 17 matches this weekend. According to Italian media, the funeral will take place earlier this week in London, where Vialli had been living since the end of his playing career.

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