28 Oct 2022

Top footballer Pablo Mari among several stabbed at supermarket near Milan

11:34 am on 28 October 2022
Pablo Mari (AC Monza) celebrates his goal during the italian soccer Serie A match AC Monza vs Spezia Calcio on October 09, 2022 at the U-Power Stadium in Monza, Italy (Photo by Luca Rossini/LiveMedia/NurPhoto) (Photo by Luca Rossini / NurPhoto / NurPhoto via AFP)

Pablo Mari in action for Monza in Italy. Photo: AFP

Monza and Arsenal player Pablo Mari who is on loan from Arsenal has been stabbed along with four other people in a shopping mall in the town of Assago outside Milan, reports in local media say.

They say a 30-year-old cashier of the Carrefour supermarket died after a man started attacking people in Assago.

Among the injured was Pablo Mari, a 29-year-old Spanish football player on loan to Monza football club from Arsenal.

A 46-year-old suspect has been detained. Police have ruled out any terrorist motive.

The attacker has had mental health problems, the reports say.

They say he started stabbing people at random at about 6.30pm local time at a Carrefour supermarket in a local shopping centre.

Screams were reportedly heard inside the centre, as terrified visitors tried to flee in panic.

The attacker is reported to have been detained by several customers and handed over to police who arrived at the scene.

Mari, a 29-year-old Spanish defender, is said to have suffered a stab wound to the back - but his injuries are not life-threatening. He is now recovering in hospital.

He joined Arsenal from Brazilian side Flamengo in January 2020. He has only played 19 times for the Gunners and is on loan with top flight Italian club Monza.

Monza have released a statement about the player.

"Dear Pablo, we are all here close to you and your family, we care for you, continue to fight the way you know how, you are a warrior and will heal soon," wrote Monza chief executive Adriano Galliani on the official club social media accounts.

Galliani and coach Raffaele Palladino rushed to the Niguarda Hospital to visit Mari after news emerged he was one of those injured in the random attack.

Arsenal has also posted a statement on its website about the attack on Mari, saying the club was shocked.

"We have been in contact with Pablo's agent who has told us he's in hospital and is not seriously hurt.

"Our thoughts are with Pablo and everyone else involved in this dreadful incident."

- BBC / Football Italia