Just days after legendary Argentine footballer, Diego Maradona, passed away, the Italians said goodbye to their own. Italian news network, RAI, reported this evening that legendary Italian footballer, Paolo Rossi has passed away at the age of 64. Rossi, 1982 World Cup winner and Ballon d’Or winner, recently worked for RAI as a pundit.
Rossi’s wife, Federica Cappelletti, confirmed the sad news on social media after the news was reported by his RAI colleague, Enrico Varriale.
During his playing career, Rossi played for Serie A giants, Juventus, Milan, and several other Serie A clubs prior to his retirement in 1987. He was Capocannoniere (leading scorer) of Serie A in 1977-78 with 24 goals, won the Winners’ Cup in 1984, the UEFA Supercup in 1984-85, the European Cup with Juventus in 1985 and 2 Serie A titles in 1982 and 1984.
However, it was his heroics in 1982 that placed in name in the history books. Rossi scored 20 goals in 48 caps for the Azzurri, including 6 on route of the 1982 World Cup in Spain. He scored a hat-trick to beat Brazil 3-2, two goals to defeat Poland 2-0 in the semis, and another goal in the 3-1 final victory against West Germany.
As a result, Rossi won the Golden Boot as the top scorer at the 1982 World Cup and in addition, received the Ballon d’Or as the European Player of the Year.