All of today's games are postponed due to mourning.
Former Italy Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, a former mayor of Florence, said Astori's passing "seems impossible", adding that he was "in a state of disbelief and I cry with his family and all for Fiorentina".
The Serie A club announced that the defender, who had been capped 14 times by Italy, had died following a "sudden illness".
Astori was found dead in a hotel room before the match of Italian championship between Fiorentina and Udinese.
The German news agency DPA said the cause of death appeared to be cardiac arrest. An ESPN report claimed players on a rival team were shaken by the news when they took to the pitch before their own game, not against Fiorentina.
Serie A side Fiorentina confirmed the death of their captain in a short statement on their website.
Astori started out in the Milan youth academy but never played a senior match for the Rossoneri, making his Serie A debut with Cagliari in 2008.
Astori previously spent six seasons at Cagliari and one on loan at AS Roma. We talked for a good half an hour after the Bologna game [a 2-1 win on 5 February AEDT] and he was telling me all about the project and the new lads. The English Football Association said it plans to honor Astori when it hosts Italy at Wembley on March 27 in a friendly.
Radja Nainggolan, Astori's former Cagliari teammate wrote on Instagram: "A great player, but even more than that, a great person".
Tributes from players and clubs have been flooding in on social media.
And there were many more messages of support, but none better than that of Gianluigi Buffon, the Juventus legend who played on the national team with him.
The Italian league then postponed the other five Serie A matches scheduled for Sunday, including the Milan derby.
Astori, who had 14 worldwide caps with Italy, was a member of the squad that played in the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup. Italy won the match 3-2 on penalty kicks.
"A man who loved football and who grew up as footballer with us".
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