A Senegalese former national team midfielder, Papa Diop, has been confirmed to have died at the age of 42 after battling to survive a long-time illness.
As gathered, Diop, former Premier league star was said to have been suffering a long-time illness, Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, before he died on Sunday.
Diop became a national hero with the country’s national team when he scored the goal which saw Senegal beat France 1-0 in their opening World Cup game in 2002.
The midfielder, who became a household in French league, death was confirmed by his former club, RC Lens, describing his death as a rude shock
In a short statement, the club paid tribute on its official social media handle, writing, “It is with great sadness that Racing Club de Lens has just learned of the disappearance of its former player Papa Bouba Diop, at the age of 42. We offer our deepest condolences to his loved ones”.
It would be recalled that the midfielder first arrived in English football when he joined Fulham from Lens in 2004, becoming known as “The Wardrobe” at Craven Cottage.
Three years after, the midfielder joined Portsmouth and after a stint with AEK Athens returned to the top flight by joining West Ham in 2011. And after one season with the Hammers he joined Birmingham City before being released in January 2013.
Before quitting the national team, Diop won 63 caps for Senegalese national team, scoring 11 goals including his historic World Cup strike.