Football Player Finds Out His Brother Died On The Field African Football: A Chronology Of Tragedies On And Off The Field Of Play

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African Football: A Chronology Of Tragedies On And Off The Field Of Play

Professional soccer as a competitive sport has had its unfair share of tragedies over the years. Apart from the tragedies on the pitch, the spectators have not been spared either.

Africa’s darkest day in football perhaps remains the plane crash of April 27, 1993, when 18 members of the Zambia national team and 12 technicians and crew members perished when their plane plunged into the sea ​​off the coast of Gabon.

The tragedy crosses continents, and that fact was confirmed during a league match between the Kaizer Chiefs and the Orlando Pirate. A stampede at Ellis Park stadium in Johannesburg killed 43 people, the worst disaster in South Africa’s sporting history.

Africa again witnessed another sporting tragedy when a local league match between Lupopo and TP Mazembe on April 30, 2001 led to the deaths of 14 people during a stampede following crowd trouble at a major league match in the city of Lubumbashi in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The Nigerian sports family witnessed one of football’s most horrifying tragedies on December 23, 2008, when nine amateur footballers and two coaches were burned to death in a car crash en route from Jos, Plateau State.

Tears of grief had barely dried when 15 members of an amateur team, FC Jimeta from Adamawa State, Nigeria, were killed in another car accident on January 26, 2009.

Twelve of the dead were players, while the remaining three were coaches.

Intense heat and overcrowding led to the deaths of 4 football fans in a Ghana League match between Asante Kotoko and Hearts of Oaks in Kumasi on Sunday 8 February 2009.

On February 21, 2009, 13 soccer fans of Ocean Boys FC from Yenegoa of the Nigerian Premier League were killed by suspected cult members on their way to attend a Premier League match between their team and the Bayelsa United at the Ughelli Township Stadium in Delta State, Nigeria.

Tragedy struck at Abidjan’s Stade Felix Houphout-Boigny stadium, when Ivory Coast hosted Malawi, when 22 soccer fans were crushed to death when a fence collapsed as they tried to enter the already packed stadium, during a 2010 World Cup qualifier.

Footballers are also not spared from these tragedies, which often occur on or off the pitch.

Below is a list of African footballers who have been killed on the pitch.

  • Samuel Okwaraji (Nigeria) – died of a heart attack on August 12, 1989
  • Amir Angwe (Nigeria) – died of a heart attack on October 29, 1995
  • George Iginewari (Nigeria) – died of a gunshot wound in 1995
  • Tunde Charity (Nigeria) – died of a head injury in 1997
  • Emmanuel Nwanegbo (Nigeria) – died of heart failure on August 30, 1997
  • Shamo Quaye (Ghana) – died while training with the team on 30 November 1997
  • John Ikoroma (Nigeria) – died of a heart attack in February 2000
  • Charles Esheko (Nigeria) – died of cardiac arrest on July 14, 2001
  • Marc-Vivien Fo (Cameroon) – died of a heart attack on June 26, 2003
  • Sam Okoye (Nigeria) – died after a short illness in August 2005
  • Chaswe Nsofwa (Zambia) – died of heart failure on August 29, 2007
  • Guy Tchingoma (DR Congo) – died of a heart-related ailment on February 9, 2009
  • George Katete (DR Congo)- died of a heart attack on March 5, 2009
  • Orobosa Adun (Nigeria) – collapsed and died on May 26, 2009
  • Endurance Idahor (Nigeria) – died of a seizure on March 13, 2010

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