The Barcelona players wore black armbands in their match against Levante UD Saturday. This time, the band was not for remembering a former club legend or a Spanish federation official who died of old age. It was for a young Italian that the players had probably never met, never played against, and maybe, never even heard of before. Piermario Morosini, the 25 year-old midfielder of Livorno, collapsed on the pitch during a Serie B game. Medical personnel pronounced him dead of cardiac arrest by the time he had reached the hospital.
The incident echoed of a similar situation just a few weeks ago involving Bolton Wanderers’ Fabrice Muamba. Although Muamba is recovering successfully, the way the football world rallied around him was inspiring. Just as other teams supported Éric Abidal during his liver transplant earlier this week, Barcelona returned the respect to Muamba and Morosini.
It once again became painfully clear that football is more than just a game. Teams are more than just opponents. And Barcelona, is more than just a club.
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