It has been a very difficult start to the week so far, with news of two young footballers’ deaths filtering out of Africa.
CAF President Issa Hayatou has had to express sadness at the tragic passing of a 19 year-old Guinean player who suffered a heart attack after training in Tunisia.
Oumar Tourade Bangoura, 19, a midfielder with AS Kaloum of Conakry, Guinea died after finishing a training camp in Sousse where the Guinean champions have set a training camp preparing for the new season.
He collapsed just after training and was rushed to a local hospital, but died en route.
Hayatou expressed his sadness and promised to invest more on medical research to forestall such occurrence.
In his statement, Hayatou said, “I’m deeply saddened by this tragic death of such a young football player who was enjoying a very promising career. My thoughts go out to his family and friends,” Hayatou said adding: “CAF and the entire African football fraternity is deeply concerned with any such incidents of players dying on or off the fields and our priority will be to enhance investment in medical research to help deal with such issues and try and forestall any such occurrences and minimise their impact.”
Only a day later came the news that former Cameroonian international, Valery Mezague was found dead in his apartment in France.
Mezague was 30, and played for a French lower league outfit at the time of his death. But he was capped five times by Cameroon and was part of the team that made the Confederations Cup final in 2003. He had a loan spell playing for Portsmouth in 2003-2004 and was in Bury FC in England in 2013.
In his condolence message, Issa Hayatou expressed sadness and extended “deepest condolences to his friends and family on this sad and sudden loss”.
No reason has been given for Mezague’s death, but the police have said they were not looking for anyone else in connection with the incident.