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


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.”