SPANISH football coach Francisco Garcia has died from coronavirus – aged just 21.
Garcia had worked with Malaga-based Atletico Portada Alta since 2016, managing their junior side but was diagnosed with a form of leukaemia after being taken to hospital with severe coronavirus symptoms.
Almost 300 people have died in Spain since the Covid-19 outbreak.
Garcia was the fifth victim of the pandemic in the Malaga region, but by far the youngest – with the others in their 70s or 80s.
After arriving at hospital, medics found the Spanish coach to be suffering from leukaemia.
The pre-existing condition affected his ability to fight off the virus, with local health authorities claiming he would have otherwise recovered.
It’s thought Garcia could be the youngest person in the world to die as a result of coronavirus – although a baby in the UK tragically contracted the disease last week.
Spanish football, including LaLiga, has already been suspended in a bid to protect players and limit the spread of the killer bug.
The youngest victim in the UK so far was just 59 years old, retired detective constable Nick Matthews, who passed away following a trip to Spain.
The death toll in the UK has rocketed to 35 on the back of the tragic news about Matthews.
As of now, Spain has 8,744 reported coronavirus cases, with 297 people having passed away.
Spaniards have now been told to stay at home, with Italy on total lockdown and France recently closing pubs, restaurants, cinemas and shops.
Heartbroken Portada Alta president Pepe Bueno said: “Francisco was a great guy and a very talented coach. We are all still shocked.
“The hospital rang me at 7pm on Sunday to say his condition had stabilised, but then an hour later…
“The coronavirus came together with a bad illness he had. I can’t believe it has happened.”
Portada Alta said in a statement: “We wish to express our deepest sympathy to the family and friends of Francisco Garcia, who has left us today.
“What will we do without you, Francis?
“We will never forget you. Rest in peace, legend.”