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Ex-Ghana and Ajax star Abubakari Yakubu dead at 35 after illness

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Abubakari Yakubu

African football rocked by shock death of ex-Black Stars midfielder who starred in Champions League while in Amsterdam.

FORMER Ghana and Ajax star Abubakari Yakubu has died, aged 35.

The defensive midfielder has passed away in hospital after an illness, the Ghanaian FA have announced.

 Yakubu Abubakar has died at the age of 36

AFP – GETTY
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Yakubu Abubakar has died at the age of 36

They tweeted: “We’re sad to hear the death of former Ghana, Ajax and Vitesse midfielder Abubakari. Our thoughts are with his family. May his soul RIP.”

Abubakari made 16 appearances for the Black Stars, and was part of their squad in the 2006 Africa Cup of Nations.

But he failed to make the final cut for the squad who competed in the World Cup in Germany later that year.

Abubakari enjoyed a good career in Holland after leaving Africa as a 17-year-old to join Ajax.

 Yakubu Abubakar joined Ajax at the age of 17 and won two titles with the club

GETTY: Yakubu Abubakar joined Ajax at the age of 17 and won two titles with the club

During his time in Amsterdam he won two Eredivisie titles in 2002 and 2004, and also played in the Champions League with the Dutch club.

He then left to join Vitesse Arnheim, where he played for five years.

The versatile player, who could also play in defence, represented Ghana at every age group from under-17 upwards.

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Few details have been given as to how Abukakari died, other than he was admitted to hospital in Ghana earlier this week where he was place on life-support.

But it is understood he died on Tuesday afternoon after doctors were unable to treat his condition.

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Victor Moses scores on Turkish debut to seal Fenerbahçe win

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Victor Moses, former Super Eagles winger, scored on his debut for struggling Turkish Super League side, Fenerbahçe, in their 2-0 win over Goztepe on Friday evening.

The former Chelsea player, Moses, came on for Andre Ayew, scorer of the first goal, in the 64th minute and sealed the win nine minutes later with his first strike in Turkish football.

Fenerbahçe had won only once in seven league games and flirting with relegation before the arrival of Moses, who is looking to reignite his career after being deemed surplus to requirement at Chelsea.

The wing wizard advanced with the ball just inside the opposition’s half, laid it off for Jailson who returned the favour, picking out the galloping Moses in the six-yard box to finish off the move he started.

The former Wigan player only played twice for the London club since the arrival of coach Mauricio Sarri, and the 28-year-old forward had to join the former Turkish League champions on an 18- month loan deal late in the January transfer window.

Victor Moses abruptly retired from the Super Eagles to focus on his club career but it is hoped that a return to regular club football could make him return to the national team.

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Messi, Maradona plead for Sala search to continue

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Lionel Messi and Diego Maradona have joined calls to resume the search for the missing plane carrying Cardiff striker, Emiliano Sala.

Guernsey Police called off the search for Sala and pilot David Ibbotson on Thursday afternoon, but the player’s former club Nantes led calls from across football for it to be resumed.

Barcelona star Messi added his voice to the cause on Friday, writing on his Instagram story, said: “As long as there are still possibilities, a hint of hope, we ask you please continue to look for Emiliano.

“I send all my strength and support to his family and friends. #PrayforSala.”

Another Argentinian football superstar, 1986 World Cup winner Maradona, also posted on Instagram pleading for the search to continue, with the message: “Hope never dies.”

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Neymar gets new lover

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Neymar has sparked new rumours regarding his love life after being pictured alongside a Brazilian model, Mari Tavares.

The PSG ace has been single since his tumultuous relationship with long-term partner Bruna Marquezine ended in October.

With Ligue 1 entering a winter break, Neymar enjoys a short festive holiday – and also experiments with new looks having revealed his fake dreadlocks recently.

And while spending Christmas back in his native Brazil, he fuelled romance rumours after being spotted alongside a 20-year-old model Mari Tavares at a party.

The bombshell is an active Instagram user where she often shows off her stunning curves and tattoos to her 175,000 followers.

And although the pair have not been seen showing affection to each other yet, in Brazil Tavares is already thought to be Neymar’s next lover.

The 26-year-old winger has been single since breaking up with his long-term partner Bruna Marquezine in October.

Neymar had been involved in an on-and-off relationship with the 23-year-old Brazilian actress and model for six years before ending it in October.

The Brazil ace was rumoured to have cheated on his ex with a soap opera actress Giovanna Lancellotti, but laughed off the speculations.

It was claimed the couple were at odds over politics ahead of a heated presidential election but Marquezine denied it.

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She said: “It was his decision. I am going to ask that this issue isn’t prolonged because normally I don’t speak about my personal life.

“I have a lot of respect and affection for him and for everything we went through together.

“I just want to clear this point up, because we are living through a critical and dangerous time, a time with a lot of hate and no, the breakup had nothing to do with that [politics].”

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