Spanish coach Francisco Garcia, 21, dies after coronavirus diagnosis

A Spanish youth coach has died after it was revealed he had the coronavirus and a previously obscure diagnosis of leukemia.

Francisco Garcia, 21, was coach of the junior team of Malaga-based club Atletico Portada Alta and had an obscure preexisting condition which was later uncovered to be a form of leukemia. The leukemia was only discovered while he was in the hospital receiving care subsequent to showing symptoms of the coronavirus, which Garcia was more susceptible to as a result of the preexisting condition.

The 21-year-old on Sunday, making him the youngest person to have died from the coronavirus pandemic in Spain.

A club statement said: “From Atletico Portada Alta we want to express our most profound condolences to the family and friends of our coach Francisco Garcia who has tragically left us today. What will we do without you now, Francis? You were always there with us at Portada or wherever we needed you, helping. How are we going to continue to conquer kilometers in the league? We don’t know how but without for sure, we will do so for you. We will never forget you.”

Spanish second division side Malaga FC paid tribute to Garcia in a tweet: “on behalf of the club we want to transmit to Atletico Portada Alta our most sincere condolences for the loss of one of their coaches, Francisco Garcia, and send our warmest wishes to his family and friends. Between us all we must stop the COVID-19.”

There have been 309 deaths related to the coronavirus in Spain, forcing a lockdown in the country.