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Tito Vilanova: Twitter Reacts to Shocking News Surrounding Barcelona Manager

MALLORCA, SPAIN - NOVEMBER 11:  Head coach Tito Vilanova of FC Barcelona looks on prior to the La Liga match between RCD Mallorca and FC Barcelona at Iberostar Stadium on November 11, 2012 in Mallorca, Spain.  (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
David Ramos/Getty Images
Timothy RappFeatured ColumnistDecember 19, 2012

Today, FC Barcelona, its players and fans are rallying in support of Tito Vilanova, who will reportedly have surgery for a parotid ailment relapse. 

From FCBarcelona.com:

The Club's Medical Services have issued the following medical report on the health of FC Barcelona's manager, Francesc 'Tito' Vilanova:

"An extension of the pathology has been detected in [Vilanova's] parotid gland. The manager requires surgery which he will undergo this Thursday. He is expected to remain in hospital for three to four days.

After the surgery, Francesc 'Tito' Vilanova will undergo chemotherapy and rediation treatment for approximately six weeks. During this time, and depending on how well he recovers, Vilanova's treatment may be compatible with his work life.

Accordingly, the soccer world has taken to Twitter to publicly wish Vilanova well and hope for his fast recovery.

Former footballer Gary Lineker offered the following support:

Very sorry to hear Tito Vilanova, the Barca coach, is undergoing surgery after a cancer relapse. Thoughts are with him.

— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) December 19, 2012

Celtic's Victor Wanyama did the same:

Without our health we have nothing, Its very sad news forBarca, get well soon Tito Vilanova we all pray for you. God bless you

— Victor Wanyama (@VictorWanyama) December 19, 2012

Eintracht Frankfurt's Carlos Zambrano is offering up his prayers:

I am do not know #Vilanova but i am dedicating him all my prayers. I am sure he will win this battle w/ the support of all. Fuerza Tito!

— Carlos Zambrano (@5zambranocz) December 19, 2012

AC Milan's director, Umberto Gandini, publicly exclaimed his support:

All the best to Tito Vilanova, wishing you another win over Evil ! #Anims Tito

— Umberto Gandini (@UmbertoGandini) December 19, 2012

Finally, in a very classy move, Real Madrid has expressed well-wishes for its rival's manager:

Real Madrid release statement in support of Tito Vilanova, who is rumoured to have suffered a cancer relapse: bit.ly/UMqgsB #RM #FCB

— Goal.com(@goal_intl) December 19, 2012

Here is an excerpt from that statement:

Real Madrid want to express their support, love and affection to Barcelona coach Tito Vilanova and hope that he makes quickest recovery.

The Real Madrid C. F. extends this support to your club and your family.

Yes, this situation goes well beyond matters on the pitch. But those will have to be attended too eventually, even if they shouldn't be a primary concern:

When it comes to Tito Vilanova's ailment, football doesn't matter, notes @marcotti. It's all about his speedy recovery: soccernet.espn.go.com/blog/_/name/es…

— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) December 19, 2012

From that article, Gabriele Marcotti notes the following

He should have every right and every opportunity to evaluate the situation with the utmost serenity, without the slightest pressure from anyone, and do what he deems best for himself and for his loved ones. And that may or may not involve returning to the helm of Barcelona.

Of course, the club will need someone to fill in for him. And sure, it would make things a lot easier for everyone if they knew if and when he was coming back. But life doesn't work that way. And you hope that the club will simply take it on the chin, do what it needs to do and let Tito decide what he wants in his own time.

And as Will Carroll notes, there will be plenty of speculation as to who will take over for Vilanova if he has to take a lengthy leave of absence:

Tito Vilanova to undergo surgery for cancer. No word yet on who takes over Barca, but Guardiola rumors o'plenty.

— Will Carroll (@injuryexpert) December 19, 2012

Yes, there will be rumors. No, I don't think Pep Guardiola will be returning, especially under these circumstances. It wouldn't be appropriate. 

Obviously, everyone here at Bleacher Report is hoping for Vilanova's speedy recovery. I'm sure the team will rally around him during this difficult time, much in the same manner as the Indianapolis Colts have rallied around Chuck Pagano during his battle with acute promyelocytic leukemia.

Pagano's recovery has served as an inspiration to his team and the entire NFL community. Vilanova has beaten this cancer before, and I have no doubt he'll inspire us all when he does so again. 

 

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