Florijana Ismaili, a 26-year-old Swiss national soccer team player and captain of BSC Young Boys Frauen, has been found dead after going missing on Saturday, June 29. Ismaili had been enjoying a day on the lake with a teammate at the time of her disappearance.
While on the lake, Ismaili dove into the water but never resurfaced.
On Tuesday, July 2, officials recovered her body in Lake Como in Northern Italy. Ismaili’s body was found approximately 670 feet below the surface.
“The Swiss Football Federation (SFV) has the painful task of informing about the death of its national player Florijana Ismaili. We are all upset, deeply affected and very, very sad,” the organization said in a statement. “The SFV expresses its sincere condolences to the family, relatives and friends of Florijana Ismaili and wishes everyone all the strength in this difficult time.”
Swiss national women’s team coach Nils Nielsen also commented on Ismaili’s death.
“It’s hard to accept that Flori is gone. She always had a smile on her face and inspired us with her happy nature. She was someone who faced every challenge and set the example,” Nielsen said, via BBC.com.
“I can only imagine what it must be like for all those who knew Flori longer and closer than me. But my thoughts are with them in these difficult times.”
Ismaili was considered by many to be one of the top players in Switzerland and had received honors from the Swiss League, Swiss Association of Football Players, and her teammates.
Ismaili was born on January 1, 1995, and began her youth career with FC Walperswil. She is of Albanian descent.
“UEFA and the European football community is deeply shocked and saddened by the death of Florijana Ismaili,” UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin. “We extend our deepest sympathy to her family and friends at this sad moment.”
Our deepest condolences go out to Ismaili’s family, friends, and all of those who are impacted by the tragedy during this incredibly difficult and tragic time.