Tributes flood in after football legend Luis Enrique announces the tragic death of his nine-year-old daughter

Terrible news

Luis Enrique's daughter Xana has tragically passed away from bone cancer, aged nine. The footballing legend – who was the former captain of both the national team and Barcelona – announced the news via Twitter on Thursday evening. Luis stepped down as Spain's national team coach in June so that he could spend more time with Xana. In a statement, Luis said: "Our daughter Xana passed away this afternoon at the age of nine years old after fighting an osteosarcoma for five intense months. We will miss you very much, but we will remember you every day for the rest of our lives with the hope that in the future, we will meet again. You will be the star that guides our family." Enrique also thanked the hospital staff for looking after his daughter when she was unwell.

Tributes have flooded in since Enrique shared the sad news. The Spanish Football Federation said it "wants to show our condolences to family and friends, joining us all today to their pain". Barcelona football club added: "Our condolences and all our sympathy for Luis Enrique and his family at this very difficult time. RIP Xana." Lionel Messi, who plays for the world-class football club, issued a statement of his own, saying: "We are with you, all the strength of the world," and tennis player Rafael Nadal wrote: "I have just found out the terrible news of the passing of Xana. I am very sad and I can’t even imagine the family’s pain. A huge hug for Luis Enrique and all the family."

Enrique shared the devastating news on Twitter

When Enrique stepped down from his role as Spain's manager in June it was said to be due to a "personal matter". At the time Enrique thanked the football federation staff "for the faith they have shown me and for understanding the situation".

MORE: Enrique Iglesias and Rafael Nadal to open string of Spanish restaurants

Enrique and Xana

Our thoughts are with Enrique and his family at this very sad time.

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