Former Barcelona coach Tito Vilanova dies of cancer at 45

By Evan Hilbert |

Tito Vilanova, pictured here in 2013. (Getty Images)

Former FC Barcelona coach Tito Vilanova died Friday at the age of 45 after a long battle with throat cancer.

Vilanova announced to the team prior to the season that due to his medical condition he'd be unable to coach.

"The doctors recommend that, with the treatments that I must follow from now on, I cannot devote 100 percent to the tasks of head coach as required by FC Barcelona. But I will continue to work closely for the club that I love on other sporting tasks," Vilanova said at the time.

In a statement, Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu offered condolences to Vilanova's family.

"Tito Vilanova, a human role model and a football icon. Thanks for everything you have taught us. Rest in peace."

Vilanova is survived by his wife and two children.

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