Legendary AC Milan goalkeeper Villiam Vecchi, who was also part of Carlo Ancelotti‘s Real Madrid coaching staff as a goalkeeping coach, passed away on Wednesday at the age of 73.
Real Madrid fans will always remember him as the goalkeeping coach during the 2014 La Decima season, a year in which he had to deal with the competition between Diego Lopez and Iker Casillas.
His was the idea that Lopez should play in LaLiga Santander, with Casillas being between the posts in the Copa del Rey and Champions League games.
That formula that ended up working, as Real Madrid won both the Copa del Rey and Champions League titles, while also challenging for the LaLiga Santander title until the penultimate matchday.
Vecchi trained as a goalkeeper at the AC Milan academy, making his debut in 1967.
He was part of the first team for seven seasons, winning Serie A, one Coppa Italia, a Supercoppa Italiana, two Cup Winners’ Cups and an Intercontinental Cup.
For many years, he was known among AC Milan fans as the ‘Hero of Thessaloniki’ for his spectacular Cup Winners’ Cup final display against Leeds United in 1973.
As a goalkeeping coach, Vecchi worked at AC Milan, Reggiana, Parma and Juventus, as well as Real Madrid.
He arrived at Los Blancos at the age of 64 and immediately won over all the goalkeepers.
He also worked with Keylor Navas in the 2014/15 season.
Real Madrid statement
Los Blancos released an official statement, one which they posted on their website, to offer their condolences to Vecchi’s family following his passing.
“Real Madrid C.F., its President and the Board of Directors are deeply saddened by the passing of Villiam Vecchi, Real Madrid’s goalkeeper coach from 2013 to 2015,” read the statement.
“Real Madrid would like to express its condolences and send its love and sympathy to his family, his teammates, his clubs and loved ones.
“During his two seasons as part of the Real Madrid coaching staff with Carlo Ancelotti as coach, Villiam Vecchi won 1 European Cup, 1 Club World Cup, 1 European Super Cup and 1 Copa del Rey.
“Villiam Vecchi passed away at the age of 73. May he rest in peace.”