Rugby League Star was found dead in an Italian hotel room and has been named as retired rugby star Ricky Bibey.
Police were called to the first floor of the Hotel Continentale in Florence after a UK citizen was found dead in his room yesterday.
A woman, believed to be his partner, was rushed to hospital with serious injuries.
Italian media outlet La Nazione reported the dead man was Manchester-born rugby league star Bibey, 40.
His former team has paid tribute to him on Twitter. They wrote: “Trinity is saddened to hear of the passing of former prop-forward Ricky Bibey, aged 40.
“Ricky played for Trinity between 2007 and 2009, making 60 appearances.
“We send our condolences to Ricky’s family and friends at this tough time.”
“We played against each other since the age of about 14. Yorkshire vs Lancashire & together for England schools boys U16’s. A great lad. Absolutely devastating news.”
Bibey’s former amateur club Leigh East wrote: “All at the club are saddened to hear about the death of our former junior Ricky Bibey who passed away on holiday.
Ricky Bibey cause of death
Further details about his death have not been released. But it will be published soon. Because police investigating.
Bibey is reported to have worked as an estate agent in the years following his retirement and had previously run a development company.
When approached by the PA news agency, Florence police and hotel staff were unable to provide any information regarding the incident, and the Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office (FCDO) did not confirm reports of the man’s identity.
An FCDO spokesperson said on Saturday: “We are in touch with the Italian police following the death of a British man in Florence.”