Senegalese football legend Bouba Diop dies after a protracted illness, he was aged 42

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Popular Senegalese footballer Papa Bouba Diop have been confirmed dead.

  Senegal’s legend and former Portsmouth and Fulham midfielder was aged  42.

He died after falling ill for a long time.

Diop secured his place in his country’s history by scoring the winner against reigning champions France in their first-ever World Cup game in 2002. Senegal went on to reach the quarter-finals of the tournament before they were knocked out by Turkey.

FIFA confirmed the death of the midfielder, saying: “FIFA is saddened to learn of the passing of Senegal legend Papa Bouba Diop. Once a World Cup hero, always a World Cup hero.”

Senegal president Macky Sall paid tribute on Twitter, saying: “The death of Pape Bouba Diop is a great loss for Senegal.

“I pay tribute to a good footballer, respected by all for his courtesy and his talent, proudly reminding us of the Lions saga in 2002. I offer my heartfelt condolences to his family and to the football world.”