Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos has paid tribute to “dear brother” Antonio Puerta, who died 10 years ago on Monday at the age of 22.
The 31-year-old posted a series of messages on his social media accounts in recognition of his former Sevilla team-mate.
Puerta suffered heart failure during a LaLiga match against Getafe at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan on August 25. He died in hospital three days later as a result of multiple organ failure brought on by the cardiac arrests, which were attributed to a hereditary heart condition called arrhythmogenic right ventricular dysplasia.
Writing on Twitter and Instagram, Ramos said: “10 years, dear brother. 10 years since you left us.
“10 years of a vacuum that we can never understand.10 years of a penalty that will always accompany us.10 years of a life that will never be the same.10 years of a game you deserved to win.
“10 years of memories and longing.10 years of feeling close even without being.10 years of victories that will always be yours.10 years of eternity.
“Always with you, always with us. “
Ramos progressed through the Sevilla youth system with Puerta and played alongside him in the first-team defence until his move to Madrid in 2005.
Thousands of fans of Sevilla and bitter rivals Real Betis lined the streets for the defender’s funeral and the Trofeo Antonio Puerta memorial match has been held each year in his honour since 2008.
10 años, querido hermano. 10 años desde que nos dejaste. 10 años de un vacío que nunca podremos entender. 10 años de una pena que siempre nos acompañará. 10 años de una vida que no volverá a ser igual. 10 años de un partido que mereciste ganar. 10 años de recuerdos y añoranza. 10 años de sentirte cerca aun sin estar. 10 años de victorias que siempre serán tuyas. 10 años de eternidad. Siempre contigo, siempre con nosotros. Always with you, always with us. #EternoPuerta
A post shared by Sergio Ramos (@sergioramos) on Aug 28, 2017 at 12:46am PDT