Paolo Rossi, the hero of Italy‘s 1982 World Cup-winning campaign, has died at the age of 64. The news was announced on Thursday by Italian TV channel RAI Sport, for whom Rossi had been working as a pundit.
“Such terribly sad news: Paolo Rossi has left us,” said RAI Sport presenter Enrico Varriale, who did not disclose the cause of death.
“Unforgettable Pablito, who made all of us fall in love in that summer of 1982 and who was a precious and competent work colleague in RAI over recent years.”
Shortly after the announcement, Rossi’s wife, Federica Cappelletti, posted a photo of herself and her husband on Instagram along with the words “per sempre” – “forever”.
Rossi won two Italian Serie A titles, a European Cup and a Coppa Italia during his four years with Juventus but it was his time with the national team that is most fondly remembered as his six goals led Italy to World Cup victory.
Rossi scored a hat-trick against Brazil in the second stage, both goals against Poland in a 2-0 semi-final victory, and then scored another in the final as Italy beat West Germany 3-1 to lift the trophy for the third time.