Former Marseille president Pape Diouf has died after suffering from coronavirus, his club has announced.
The club tweeted: “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.
The club had earlier revealed the 68-year-old, who was also a former Ligue de Football Professionnel (LFP) official, had been suffering from coronavirus.
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A statement on the LFP website read: “The Ligue de Football Professionnel has learned this evening with great sadness of the death of Pape Diouf at the age of 68.
“Journalist, agent, president of Olympique de Marseille from 2005 to 2009, Pape Diouf dedicated his whole life in service of football.
“A member of the LFP administrative council from September 2007 to June 2009, Pape Diouf will be remembered as a charismatic and passionate director.
“In this moment of immense sadness for French football, the LFP offers its condolences to his family and those close to him, and to Olympique de Marseille.”
During the Senegalese’s time at the club, Marseille twice finished second in Ligue 1 and also reached two Coupe de France finals.
The club tweeted earlier on Tuesday: “All Olympiens send strength and positive thoughts toward our former president Pape Diouf, who was affected by the #Covid19”
Former France striker Djibril Cisse played for OM when Diouf was in charge, with the president going through with his signing from Liverpool despite Cisse breaking his leg while playing for France.
Cisse was quick to pay tribute after news of his death emerged, writing on Twitter: “Today French football has lost a great man. My sadness is great today.
“Merci mon Pape… Rest in peace.”
Former Marseille players Franck Ribery, Samir Nasri and Benjamin Mendy were also among those to pay their respects, as were brothers Andre and Jordan Ayew, who also represented the Ligue 1 side.
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