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Italian legend, Ballon d’Or winner Paolo Rossi is dead

Italy’s 1982 World Cup maestro died of an “incurable disease” on Wednesday. He was 64.

• December 10, 2020

Italy’s 1982 World Cup maestro Paolo Rossi has died of an “incurable disease” aged 64, Italian broadcaster RAI reported.

The former Azzurri striker, who passed away only two months after his 64th birthday, emerged as topscorer in the 1982 mundial, after inspiring the Italians to a famous 3-1 victory over West Germany to clinch the World Cup title.

Rossi’s goalscoring heroics for both club and country earned him the Ballon d’Or in 1982, having become the first player to simultaneously win the World Cup, Golden Ball and Golden Boot awards.

The late footballer won two Serie A titles with Juventus and was also part of the Old Lady’s triumphant squad that lifted the European Cup in 1985.

Rossi amassed 48 caps with the Italian national team between 1977-1986, scoring 20 goals. His club career boasts of 134 goals from 338 matches.

The former Azzurri playmaker had long taken a new role in punditry before his demise.

His passing comes two weeks after famed Argentine footballer Diego Maradona died from a heart attack.

Retired Senegalese footballer Pape Bouba Diop had also passed on recently from an undisclosed ailment.

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