The Confederation of African Football (Caf) have paid tribute to former Marseille Football Club president Pape Diouf who died in his homeland of Senegal on Tuesday after contracting COVID-19.
The 68-year-old was hospitalised over the weekend as he was battling to breathe.
“Caf would like to express our deepest condolences following the death of former Olympique Marseille president Mababa ‘Pape’ Diouf,” said the African footballing body in a statement.
“Pape Diouf was an extraordinary man and his life speaks for him. He’ll stay as glory for our sport and pride for Africa. I wish to extend sincere condolences to his family and friends,” said Caf president Ahmad Ahmad.
Diouf rose to become the first black president of a top European club, leading French side Olympique Marseille in 2005.
He started as a journalist and later as a football agent with Marcel Desailly, Basile Boli, Khalilou Fadiga, Samir Nasri and Didier Drogba among his long list of clients.
Diouf was a regular guest at the Africa Cup of Nations often as a co-commentator or analyst.
The club had announced that Diouf was battling the virus earlier on Tuesday saying: “All Olympiens send strength and positive thoughts toward our former president Pape Diouf, who was affected by the COVID-19.”
Just hours later, the club announced his death: “It is with great sadness that Olympique de Marseille learned of the death of Pape Diouf.
“Pape will remain in the hearts of the Marseillais forever, as one of the great architects in the club’s history.
“We send our sincerest condolences to his family and loved ones.”
In partnership with ANA and Sports Leo