Ex-Senegalese midfielder, Papa Bouba Diop dies at 42

Papa Bouba Diop

Former Portsmouth, Fulham and Senegalese midfielder Papa Bouba Diop has died on Sunday at the age of 42 after a long illness.

Diop was part of Harry Redknapp’s FA Cup-winning Pompey team who defeated Cardiff City 1-0 in 2008 final.

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His former employer, Fulham, confirmed his death on Twitter as it expressed shock at the news of Diop’s passing.

“We are devastated to hear news reports this evening that Papa Bouba Diop has passed away, aged 42. Rest well, Wardrobe.”

Nicknamed, Wardrobe, Diop was part of the Teranga Lions side that stunned reigning world champions France 1-0 in the opening match of the 2002 World Cup, scoring the only goal of the game to secure one of the biggest shocks in the history of the competition.

Senegal ultimately reached the quarter-final of the tournament, with Diop going on to score twice in the West Africans’ 3-3 group-stage draw with Uruguay before they were eventually eliminated by Turkey in the final eight.

Diop made 63 international appearances for Senegal, scoring 11 goals and featured at four Africa Cup of Nations before his retirement in 2013.

He scored the only goal as Senegal shocked world champions France in the opening game of the 2002 World Cup, the win still ranks as one of the biggest shocks in World Cup history.

Another former employer, Birmingham also mourned the passing of the late football star on Twitter.

“We are devastated to learn of the passing of former player Papa Bouba Diop at the age of 42. Our thoughts are with Papa’s family and friends at this extremely difficult time.”


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