Italy World Cup hero Paolo Rossi dies aged 64

Paolo Rossi, the Italian footballer who single-handedly demolished Socrates’s Brazil in the 1982 World Cup, has died

Footballer Paolo Rossi, who was Italy’s World Cup hero in 1982 has died at the age of 64. Tis death was announced by Italian TV channel RAI for whom he worked as a sport pundit in recent years.

His wife, Cappelletti Federica, posted a photo of herself and her husband to her Instagram account along with the words “per sempre” – “forever”. She did not disclose the cause of his death.

Rossi’s name made the annals of football history for his prolific goal-scoring performance in the 1982 World Cup that saw Italy win the tournament held in Spain.

After a lacklustre Italy progressed from the group stage with three drab draws, the team ended up in what was billed as the group of death, with Brazil and Argentina.

Rossi shone against Brazil when he scored a memorable hat-trick that saw Italy through to the semi-final against Poland. Brazil was then a world class team with the likes of Socrates and Falcao.

Rossi went on to score a double against Poland and got one of Italy’s goals in the 3-1 victory in the final against West Germany.

In that World Cup Rossi went on to win the tournament’s Golden Boot and Golden Ball and, in the same year, the Ballon d’Or.

Rossi’s football career was in Italy where he played with Vicenza, Juventus and Milan.

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