Former Newcastle Jets player, Bernardo Ribeiro has died. The 26-year old midfielder died after falling ill during a match in Brazil. According to report, Brazilian Ribeiro was playing for Friburguense in his homeland on Saturday when he took ill and had to be replaced. He was taken to hospital but later suffered a suspected fatal heart attack.
He is the second footballer in two days to die from suspected heart problems. On Friday, May 6. Dinamo Bucharest’s Patrick Ekeng died in hospital after collapsing on the pitch during a Romanian league match against Viitorul Constanta.
Ribeiro’s club in a statement said:
“The Nova Friburgo sport is in mourning. The Friburguense Atlético Clube says goodbye to a great athlete and human being, loved by all the players, coaching staff, management and employees of the club. The deepest feelings of Frizao family to all families Bernardo Ribeiro.”
Although, there has not been any official statement confirming the cause of his death, former Jets team-mates took to social media to express their condolences.
Mariehamn said on their Facebook page: “We have received sad news today. Bernardo Ribeiro, who played for IFK during 2013 and 2014, has suddenly deceased after a game in Brasil with his club Friburguense. Our thoughts are with his wife Katie and his relatives. Thanks for everything and rest in peace Bernardo.”
Jets goalkeeper, Mark Birighitti said on Instagram: “I’m so deeply saddened that you’re no longer with us. My prayers go out to your family and friends. RIP my brother.”
His wife, Katie Ayscough, from Maitland, whom he married earlier this year, also wrote her Facebook page:
“I can’t believe, I don’t want to believe but the realness cannot be ignored. Tonight heaven received the most beautiful angel. My best friend, my husband, my everything.”
Ribeiro began his professional career with Skënderbeu in Albania, having come through the youth ranks with Flamengo in Brazil and, briefly, Catania in Italy. He signed for the Jets in August 2012 and made six appearances for the A-League club before proceeding to Finland with IFK Mariehamn and then back to Brazil with Inter de Lages last year.