Former Barcelona coach Tito Vilanova dies of cancer at 45

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 26 April, 2014, 12:47am
UPDATED : Saturday, 26 April, 2014, 12:47am


Tito Vilanova, the soccer coach who succeeded Pep Guardiola at Barcelona and won the Spanish league title in his only season in charge, died on Friday following a long battle with throat cancer. He was 45.

Vilanova, who had been fighting a recurring tumour in a saliva gland, was admitted to a local hospital in Barcelona last week.

Vilanova first became ill in November 2011, while still an assistant to Guardiola, and took leave of absence after undergoing surgery. The soft-spoken Vilanova returned and took over from Guardiola the next season, when he led Barcelona to the Spanish league title with a record-tying 100 points.

Vilanova is survived by his wife, Montse Chaure, and two children. His son Adrian is currently in Barcelona’s youth academy.