February 1, 2023

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Vialli’s condition worsened: he was hospitalized in London

The 87-year-old mother left yesterday for London, where the head of the blue delegation was admitted to the hospital, where he was treated for pancreatic cancer. Last week, a break from commitments with the national team

The football world is worried about Gianluca Vialli. In these days before Christmas, the terrible news of Sinisa Mihajlovic’s death was not enough, yesterday many friends, fans and ordinary people greeted her for the last time. Even Gianluca, leader of the Sampdoria tricolor with Vujadin Boskov on the bench, is back for the toughest fight, the fight of a lifetime. The opponent is pancreatic cancer, with which he has been living for five years. Vialli defined him as an “unwelcome guest”, “a traveling companion whom I would gladly make”. Carefully chosen words to send a message to those in his condition.

Stop

Unfortunately, something happened last Wednesday, when the former striker announced, via the FIFA website, that he was taking a break from the role of head of the Azzurri delegation. And he added that “I hope temporarily” referring to “the suspension of current and future commitments with Federcalcio” has sounded the alarm among the many fans that Gianluca is still in Cremonese, and with whose shirt he started his football career, Genoa, the Sampdoria team. , in black and white in Turin, but also across the Channel where he played at Chelsea, a club he coached from 1998 to 2000. Yesterday from London, where the former striker had moved to live years ago, news arrived that his conditions had deteriorated to a point to force him into the clinic where he underwent Vialli already had two cycles of chemotherapy for pancreatic cancer discovered in 2017. The moment is very delicate: the evidence is the flight of his 87-year-old mother, Maria Teresa, who left in the afternoon from Cremona for England.

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A sign confirming what no one had hoped, namely, that the disease has returned to knock harshly on Gianluca’s door. That is why, less than a week ago, the former No. 9 player expressed his willingness to “use all his mental and physical energies to help my body overcome this stage of illness.” He immediately received messages of solidarity from many of his former teammates (Ravanelli and Cabrini), the players he mentored during his coaching career (Terry) and famous personalities from the football world (Gravina, Marchisio) and not (Fedes, Salvini, Lapo Elkann). All together with Gianluca to give him the courage to fight again.

left-handed fig

With them, of course, also Roberto Mancini, yesterday among the friends who carried Mihailović’s coffin out of the Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli. It’s a harrowing moment for Coach Blue: he lost a brother like Sinisa and now worries about other brother Gianluca’s circumstances. He was with him, at the end of November, guest of Fabio Fazio, in “Che tempo che fa”, to present the documentary “La Bella Season” in the blucerchiato tournament year. The two smiled as they recalled embracing at Wembley, after the penalties against England that sealed victory in the European Championship: hearing them speak, the strong bond between them was evident even to viewers who did not know them well. “In that hug – Gianluca admitted with a smile – there was the memory of the defeat at Wembley in the Champions Cup final against Barcelona, ​​the joy of reaching an unexpected goal and the fear for my health. So many emotions in one shot and it all came out. A hug is more beautiful than the passes I gave Mancini to score Objectives “.

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Roberto and Gianluca have moved on a lot. And now everyone is waiting for the news, including the “twin” Robbie, who is in touch with his wife Catherine White Cooper, from whom Gianluca has two daughters, Olivia and Sophia. Even the FIFA is holding its breath: President Gravina, who in March 2019 with the help of Mancio returned Vialli to the national team and gave him a prestigious role, is very concerned; Ditto for the coaches and other players from the Italian national team, who yesterday, when the news began to circulate, exchanged messages to understand the health status of the head of the Italian delegation. Everyone loves him and in his battle they are on his side perfectly. They had written to him last week, after the suspension was released. And they hope to cuddle with him again soon. So are the millions of fans who have cheered his goals over the years. With clubs and in blue. They know that the “warrior” Vialli will continue to fight and in the meantime they pray for him.