Gianluca Vialli was a former Chelsea striker and manager who played 59 times for Italy.
What happened to Gianluca Viali
His death was announced on January 6, 2023. He had previously been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2017 but said in April 2020 that he had been given the all-clear.
Vialli was re-diagnosed in 2021 and in December 2022 left a role with Italy’s national team to focus on his health.
Italian Football Federation president reacts to Gianluca Viali death
A statement from Gabriele Gravina, the Italian Football Federation (FIGC) president reads;
“Gianluca was a splendid person and he leaves a void that cannot be filled. I hoped until the end that he would be able to perform another miracle. Yet I am comforted by the certainty that what he did for Italian football and the blue shirt will never be forgotten.”
What others are saying about Gianluca Viali death
Sampdoria said in a statement: “We won’t forget your 141 goals, your overhead kicks, your cashmere shirts, your earring, your platinum blonde hair, your Ultras bomber jacket. You gave us so much, we gave you so much: yes, it was love, reciprocal, infinite. A love that will not die today with you.”
Vialli helped Sampdoria reach the 1992 European Cup final but after losing to Barcelona, he moved to Juventus for a then-world-record fee of £12m. Vialli spent four seasons with Juve, winning the Champions League, Uefa Cup and Serie A titles.
A Juve statement said: “We loved everything about you, absolutely everything – your smile, your being a star and leader at the same time, on the pitch and in the dressing room, your adorable swashbuckling ways, your culture, your class, which you showed until the last day in the black and white stripes.”
A Blues statement said: “A brilliant striker, a trophy-winning manager and a wonderful man, Luca’s place in the pantheon of Chelsea greats is assured. He will be deeply missed.”
Gianluca Viali career
Vialli assisted Sampdoria in advancing to the 1992 European Cup final; however, after falling to Barcelona, he transferred to Juventus for a then-record £12 million cost. Vialli also played for Juventus for four seasons, winning the Serie A, Uefa Cup, and Champions League. Furthermore, he led Chelsea to victories in the Charity Shield and FA Cup finals in 2000, but he was fired early the following year after a shaky start.
Gianluca Viali wife: Meet Cathryn White Cooper
Gianluca Viali’s wife is Cathryn White-Cooper. She is of South African origin and married Vialli in 2003, three years after he left Chelsea. The pair met during Vialli’s time at Chelsea.
The pair kept their private life out of the public eye so not much is known about his spouse, who is believed to be a former model and interior decorator.