Ex-Barcelona boss Tito Vilanova dies following battle with throat cancer

Vilanova dies after cancer battle
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Former Barcelona boss Tito Vilanova dies at the age of 45 following a battle with throat cancer.

Barcelona have announced that former manager Tito Vilanova has passed away at the age of 45 following a lengthy battle with throat cancer.

The Spaniard, who was appointed as Pep Guardiola's successor at Camp Nou in June 2012, was diagnosed with the disease in November the previous year.

He later had a tumour removed from his parotid gland and underwent chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment for around six weeks, but eventually was forced to step down from his managerial role last summer after he relapsed.

The Catalan giants wrote on their official Twitter page: "The FC Barcelona is in immense mourning. Tito Vilanova has died at the age of 45. May he rest in peace."

Reports emerged this week claiming that the health of Vilanova, who was replaced by Tata Martino at the end of last season, was in a serious condition.

Vilanova began his football career in the Barcelona youth team and went on to play for clubs including Mallorca and Elche, before moving into coaching and management.

Tito Vilanova looks on as he gives a press conference in Barcelona on May 31, 2013
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