- Spanish soccer star José Antonio Reyes died at the age of 35 Saturday in a car accident.
- His former club Sevilla FC announced the death of the midfielder, who previously won five Europa League titles and played on Arsenal’s legendary “Invincibles” squad.
- Several of Reyes’ former clubs and teammates posted on social media to mourn the player, who one former Arsenal player called an “exceptional human being.”
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Spanish soccer star José Antonio Reyes died Saturday in a car accident, according to an announcement by his former club Sevilla FC.
Reyes, who was 35, played midfield throughout his career, which saw him win five Europa League titles and play as part of Arsenal’s legendary “Invincibles” squad, which saw a 49-game winning streak.
“We couldn’t be confirming worse news,” Sevilla wrote in a Saturday tweet. “Beloved Sevilla star José Antonio Reyes has died in a traffic collision. Rest in peace.”
No podríamos ofrecer una noticia peor. Ha fallecido en accidente de tráfico nuestro querido canterano José Antonio Reyes. Descanse en paz. pic.twitter.com/RC26QJ6zOz
— Sevilla Fútbol Club (@SevillaFC) June 1, 2019
Spanish news agency EFE reported that the crash occurred around noon on a road between his hometown of Utrera and Seville. Emergency crews reportedly tried, but ultimately could not save Reyes.
In the 1999/2000 seasons, the player became the youngest in Sevilla history to make his debut for the club at age 16. He played with the club for five years before stints with Arsenal, Real Madrid, Atlético Madrid, and Benfica.
He then returned to Sevilla at age 27 for four years in 2012 before playing for Spanish clubs Espanyol and Córdoba CF, Chinese team Xinjiang Tianshan Leopard before joining Extremadura, his most recent team.
Reyes was a stand-out player throughout his career, representing Spain in 21 games and playing in the 2006 World Cup.
The announcement set off several posts from Reyes’ former clubs and teammates to express their sorrow about his death.
“I am devastated to hear the terrible news about José,” former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said in a statement, according to the Associated Press. “To his family and friends, all support from everyone in the Arsenal family. He will remain forever in our hearts.”
Arsenal said it would fly the club flag at half mast at its training ground on Saturday.
We are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Jose Antonio Reyes today.
Reyes was a member of Spain's 2006 World Cup squad.
Our condolences and best wishes are with his loved ones. RIP. pic.twitter.com/pweTiQTT5D
— FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) June 1, 2019
Reyes’ former Arsenal teammate Thierry Henry said in a tweet he was “devastated” by the news, and called Reyes a “wonderful player, superb teammate, and exceptional human being.”
Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos wrote on Twitter in Spanish he was “Broken. Shattered.”
“I have no words,” Ramos wrote. “All the love to the family. We’ll always remember you, friend! RIP brother.”
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.