Mario Bellugi, a player capped 32 times for Italy, has passed away after complications due to Covid-19. He was 71 years old.
Many in the Italian football game have expressed their regrets at the passing of the former defender. Among them were representatives of Inter Milan and Napoli, as well as fans of the sport.
Bellugi began his playing career in 1969, playing for Inter Milan. Later, he also represented Bologna, Napoli, and Pistoiese. He made 233 appearances in the Italian first tier.
He was a member of the Italian squad in both the 1974 and 1978 World Cup tournaments, played five games in the latter. Following his retirement from football, he began working as a television commentator, endearing himself to millions across the country.
At the end of last year, Bellugi announced sad news about having to undergo a double leg amputation stemming from complications related to the new coronavirus. It was the former defender who had shared the awful news, greeting it with his usual good-natured humor by writing “They took off my leg with which I scored against Borussia Moenchengladbach.”
Sadly, his fight with the disease ended on Saturday, but all those who were touched by his work on the football pitch, or his work as a commentator of the sport will, no doubt, remember him fondly.