Igor Rossi grieves friend killed in Chapecoense air crash

Igor Rossi is mourning the loss of his friend. Picture: Getty
Igor Rossi is mourning the loss of his friend. Picture: Getty
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Hearts defender Igor Rossi has spoken of his grief after losing a personal friend in the Chapecoense air disaster.

Josimar was one of 71 people killed when a flight carrying Brazilian side Chapecoense crashed in Columbia en route to the Copa Sudamerica Final.

The 30-year-old was a former team-mate of Rossi at Internacional, where both came through the youth system and made their first-team debuts before Rossi moved to Europe.

The two kept in touch despite Rossi plying his trade in Portugal and then Scotland, and he was deeply saddened to hear about his friend’s tragic death.

He said: “It’s hard to accept that Josimar is no longer with us. We had a good relationship at Internacional for five years and while we were not in touch with each other every day, we had remained friends even when my career took me to Europe.

“He was a very good player but more importantly, he was a great man with a strong, happy personality.

“He has two babies. It is incredibly sad and will be so difficult for all the families.

“It’s hard to take it, hard to believe. I’ve spent a lot of time today talking to my father and other members of my family in Brazil.”