BREAKING: Gianluca Vialli, former Chelsea striker, has died aged 58 after battle with pancreatic cancer.

Former Chelsea manager Gianluca Vialli has died at the age of 58.

The 58-year-old had been battling pancreatic cancer after originally overcoming the illness in 2018. In December 2021 pancreatic cancer returned having been given the all-clear in 2020.

In late December, it was reported in Italy that his mother and brother had travelled to the UK to be with Vialli amid concerns over his health.

Vialli is fondly remembered for his time as manager at Stamford Bridge after enjoying a successful playing career. He moved to Chelsea in 1996 and scored 21 goals in three years before taking over in the dugout full-time in 1999.

Following Ruud Gullit’s sacking in February 1998, Vialli became the first Italian to manage in the Premier League. During his time in west London, Vialli guided the Blues to the FA Cup, League Cup, UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup, UEFA Super Cup and Charity Shield.

Vialli is one of the most popular Chelsea figures from that period and was part of the initial revolution at Stamford Bridge in one of the Blues’ most famous teams.

The former Juventus midfielder then had a spell in charge at Watford before moving into non-management roles, including his role as the delegation chief for the Italian men’s national team. However, after being part of Roberto Mancini’s staff in their Euro 2020 success, he stepped down from his position in December to focus on his battle with cancer.

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