'Terrible news': Football rocked by devastating virus tragedy

Pep Guardiola, pictured here during the FA Cup fifth round match between Newport County and Manchester City in February.
Pep Guardiola looks on during the FA Cup fifth round match between Newport County and Manchester City. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Pep Guardiola's 82-year-old mother has died after contracting coronavirus, Manchester City announced on Monday.

“The Manchester City family are devastated to report the death today of Pep's mother Dolors Sala Carrio in Manresa, Barcelona, after contracting coronavirus,” the Premier League club said in a statement.

“Everyone associated with the club sends their most heartfelt sympathy at this most distressing time to Pep, his family and all their friends.”

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Guardiola, 49, last month donated one million euros ($1.8 million) to buy medical supplies for the fight against the coronavirus pandemic in his native Spain.

He also issued a video as part of the club's Cityzens At Home initiative urging fans to stay at home.

Spain declared Monday a fourth consecutive drop in the number of coronavirus-related deaths, with 637 over the past 24 hours, the lowest number in nearly two weeks.

Fatalities, which were sharply down on the record 950 on Thursday, brought the total deaths in the country to 13,055, second only to Italy.

Football rocked by double tragedy

Meanwhile, former Atlético Madrid coach Radomir Antic, who led the club to the Spanish league and Copa del Rey titles in 1996, also died on Monday at 71.

The club did not provide a cause of death for Antic, who also briefly coached Real Madrid and Barcelona.

The former Serbian player managed Atlético over five seasons in 189 official matches, the fourth most in club history.

The Spanish league and Copa del Rey double came in his first season at Atlético. His squad included current coach Diego Simeone.

Atlético said Antic instilled an efficient style that focused on compact defending and fast counterattacking. More than half of the team’s goals that first season came from set-pieces, another key weapon of his team.

Pep Guardiola and mother Dolors Sala, pictured here in Barcelona in 2011.
Pep Guardiola and mother Dolors Sala in 2011. (Photo by Europa Press/Getty Images)

Atlético started that season with a run of 12 straight league games without a loss, a club record at the time.

The Copa del Rey title came in a final against a Barcelona team that included Pep Guardiola and Luis Figo, who were coached by Johan Cruyff.

“Today is a sad day for Atlético fans and the world of football,” Atlético president Enrique Cerezo said.

“We lost a great person and one of the architects of a magnificent golden era for Atlético.”

Antic coached Real Madrid from March 1991 until January 1992, and managed Barcelona in 2003.

Antic played for clubs such as Partizan Belgrade in Serbia, Fenerbahce in Turkey, Zaragoza in Spain, and Luton Town in England.

with Associated Press