What We Know About the 17-Year-Old Paraguayan Goalie Who Died During a Match

Lead Photo: Photo: Thomas Barwick/ Getty Images
Photo: Thomas Barwick/ Getty Images
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The only tragedies you expect on a soccer field are those of goals, fouls, and victories, yet a very real and very human tragedy occurred in Paraguay over the weekend. 17-year-old goalie Bruno Cañete died after being hit with a ball in the chest during a Paraguayan third division match between his team, Club Sport Colombia, and Paraguay’s Cerro Cora.

Cañete was hit with a hard shot to the chest, but he was able to reinsert himself into the match, at least for a few minutes. However, shortly after, he collapsed in his team’s six-yard box, leading the suspension and eventual cancellation of the rest of the match, as on-site personnel at the Estadio Alfonso Colmán rushed to his aid.

A haunting (and possibly disturbing) video from the match shows the aftermath of the incident, as they attempted to revive Cañete, with no luck:

Legendary Paraguay goalkeeper José Luis Chilavert sent his condolences for Cañete’s family on Twitter. The former TK goalie also noted there were not the necessary paramedics or ambulances on site to treat the 17-year-old at the time of his death, something Chilavert blames on the “corrupt directors” of the Asociación Paraguaya de Futbol (APF). It took 20 minutes for an ambulance to arrive to the stadium in order to take Cañete to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead on arrival.

Cañete’s youth team, Club Libertad, also tweeted out their support and well wishes for the family, along with a photo from 2012, showing Cañete and the rest of his side at age 12:

As if this incident wasn’t tragic enough, Crónica is reporting that Cañete had asked his father, Don Christian, to come to this game. The elder Cañete had put off starting a new job in order to take the extra week to watch his son play against Cerro Coda. “I was supposed to go to my job in San Pedro a week ago, but I took the extra week for my son, because he asked me to watch him in this game…and it was his last,” said Don Christian. “I was with him until his last breath.”