Stuttgart midfielder Gentner to play on despite father's death

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The Schwaben captain will not take any time out despite the tragic passing of his father at the weekend

Stuttgart have announced captain Christian Gentner will play in the club's final two fixtures before the mid-season break despite the sudden death of his father.

Herbert Gentner collapsed and died at the Mercedes-Benz Arena immediately after watching his son play in the 2-1 victory over Hertha Berlin on Saturday. The cause of his death is not yet known.

With just two games to go before Christmas, Stuttgart offered the player time off to mourn but Gentner has opted to make himself available for Tuesday's trip to Wolfsburg and Saturday's home game with Schalke.

A club statement read: "Christian Gentner is in the squad for the Bundesliga away game at Wolfsburg.

"Together with his team-mates, the captain started his journey to Niedersachsen after the training session on Monday."

Gentner, 33, completed the full 90 minutes on Saturday and assisted Mario Gomez’s winner.

The news of his father’s death overshadowed the victory after filtering through shortly after the final whistle.

The midfielder had given interviews on the pitch after the match and then quickly rushed to see his father after hearing that a doctor was treating him.

Stuttgart sporting director Michael Reschke added: "In such a difficult situation, each person acts individually. It was clear from the beginning that we would have respected every decision made by Christian with regard to the matches at Wolfsburg and against Schalke.

"It speaks for his personal connection with our club and the extraordinary relationship of the Gentner family with Stuttgart that Christian will play in both games. His decision deserves deep respect."

Gentner has made over 350 apperances for boyhood club Stuttgart, broken up by a three-year spell with Wolfsburg between 2007 and 2010, and also has five Germany caps to his name.

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