The footballing fraternity has been greeted with the awful news that Luis Enrique's nine-year-old daughter Xana passed away on August 29th, 2019 after a five-month struggle with bone cancer.
Just as the football season was kicking itself into gear, the former Spain and Barcelona manager's crushing announcement has brought everyone back down to earth.
Understandably, messages of support for the manager and his family have been pouring in after the news of Xana's death broke, confirming the belief that rivalries and competition are put aside in moments of sorrow such as this.
News of his Xana's passing
Luis Enrique revealed the passing of Xana, his nine-year-old daughter, in a statement released via social media on the evening of August 29th, 2019.
Xana Enrique, who was a regular presence at Barcelona's trophy presentations during her father's tenure, has tragically lost her five-month fight with Osteosarcoma, a rare type of bone cancer found mostly in teenagers and young adults.
Her passing is a stark reminder that, despite all of the glitz, glamour and money in the top-tier football industry, the managers and players we cheer on every week are ordinary people with families who all go through tragic, just as we do.
A rough translation of Luis Enrique's statement can be found at the end of this article.
Luis Enrique's managerial career put on hold
After receiving word of his daughter's condition, Luis Enrique understandably resigned from his role as the manager of Spain's national team following 11 months in charge.
In his brief tenure as Spain boss, the 49-year-old oversaw seven matches - winning five and losing two - but obviously he felt he couldn't continue in the role with the more pressing matter of his daughter's health to contend with and he resigned from the position in June 2019.
Luis Enrique, who is best known for his three-year spell as Barcelona manager, is one of only a handful of players to represent both Barça and fierce rivals Real Madrid.
Despite this, rivalries have been pushed to the side as the football community has grouped together in red, blue and white to support Luis.
Messages of support on Twitter
In times of adversity, in spite of rivalries and competition, members of the football family band together in support of those in need.
It is unsurprising, therefore, to see an outpouring of condolence and sympathetic messages towards Luis Enrique and his family at this tragic time in their lives.
Sin palabras... Mucho ánimo y fuerza para ti y toda tu familia mister. DEP Xana— Sergio Busquets (@5sergiob) August 29, 2019
Can’t even begin to understand how you and your family are feeling, this is heartbreaking. My thoughts are with you all.— Chris Smalling (@ChrisSmalling) August 29, 2019
Mucho ánimo y fuerza para toda la familia en estos momentos tan duros.— Thiago Alcantara (@Thiago6) August 29, 2019
Míster, todo nuestro apoyo y cariño para ti y para tu familia. No hay palabras, pero nos tienes a tu lado siempre.— Sergio Ramos (@SergioRamos) August 29, 2019
Luis Enrique's statement
"Our daughter Xana has passed away this afternoon at the age of 9, after fighting for five intense months against osteosarcoma.
We are grateful for all the examples of affection received during these months and we appreciate the discretion and understanding.
Also thank you to the staff of the Sant Joan de Deu and Sant Pau hospitals for their dedication and treatment, to the doctors, nurses and all the volunteers. With a special mention to the team of palliative priests of Sant Joan de Deu.
We will miss you very much but we will remind you every day of our lives in the hope that in the future we will meet again. You will be the star that guides our family."
Martinez Cullell family
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