Former Costa Rica defender Gabriel Badilla dies aged 32

Costa Rican Gabriel Badilla (R) of Deportivo Saprissa vies for the ball with Mexican Luis Rey (L) of Pachuca during their CONCACAF final round in Pachuca,
Image: Gabriel Badilla played over 200 matches for Deportivo Saprissa

Former Costa Rica international Gabriel Badilla has died at the age of 32 after collapsing during a 10km run, according to reports in his native country.

Badilla collapsed near the finish of the race in Santa Ana and died from a suspected heart attack at the scene despite attempts by paramedics to revive him.

The former New England Revolution and Saprissa defender won 25 caps for Costa Rica and played in two CONCACAF Gold Cups and the 2006 World Cup.

HANOVER, GERMANY - JUNE 20: Irenuesz Jelen of Poland is tackled by Gabriel Badilla of Costa Rica during the FIFA World Cup Germany 2006 match between Costa
Image: Gabriel Badilla in action for Costa Rica against Poland during the FIFA World Cup Germany 2006

Badilla underwent heart surgery in 2013 and retired from football in June.

Revolution president Brian Bilello paid respect to their former player in a statement released by the MLS side.

"The New England Revolution family is deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Gabriel Badilla on Sunday morning.

"During his time with the Revolution, he made a lasting impact on all those who were fortunate enough to know him, and we consider ourselves lucky to be among them.

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"We remember Gabriel as a great man, team-mate, and player, and our thoughts and prayers go out to his family at this difficult time."

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