The Maltese football community was mourning the loss of Ramiro Mallia, a 19-year-old from Qormi who tragically died on Tuesday as a result of a gas leak at his home.
Mallia was described by many as a kind-hearted, cheerful young man who was an avid supportor of Italian football club AC Milan.
Mallia was a young football player himself and was on the books of his town Qormi. Last season he moved on loan to Marsasakala FC.
The Malta Football Association issued a statement to mourn the loss of Mallia.
“We are deeply saddened by the news of the tragic passing of young footballer Ramiro Mallia. A football enthusiast through and through, Ramiro came through the ranks of Qormi FC and played on loan for Marsaskala FC youth teams,” the Malta FA said in a statement said.
“The Malta FA extends its deepest condolences to the family, relatives and friends of Ramiro Mallia at this sad time.”
His club Qormi FC wrote: “In the name of the Qormi FA committee, Qormi Youth Nursery, the Qormi FC supporters club, we would like to give our condolences to the family of Ramiro Mallia.
“Today, Qormi lost a treasurer, a youngster who had great courage, with a smile that cheered up everyone and a heart of gold. We will never forget you Angel.”
Marsaskala FC also issued a statement to pay homage to Mallia.
“Marsaskala FC is in mourning after the passing away of Ramiro Mallia, a player of its Youth Teams.
“Sincere condolences to the family and relatives.”
The Pietà Hotspurs Academy described Mallia as young player with a heart of gold.
“We are deeply saddened by the news of the tragic passing of young footballer Ramiro Mallia. A football enthusiast, and a 19 year old with a heart of gold, Ramiro came through the ranks of Qormi F.C. and played on loan for the Marsaskala FC youth teams this season,” the club said in a statement.
“Our club and academy extends its deepest condolences to the family, relatives and friends of Ramiro, and both Qormi FC Nursery and Marsaskala FC for whom Ramiro played so passionately throughout these years.”