The death is reported of former Ghanaian international Yakubu Abubakar at the age of 36.
The former Black Stars player a defensive midfielder, died in a hospital in the Coastal City Tema on Tuesday. Yakubu was popularly called Zapata by his football fans in Ghana.
A tweet by the official twitter handle of the Ghana Football Association confirmed this, “We’re sad to hear the death of former Ghana, Ajax and Vitesse midfielder Abubakar,” “Our thoughts are with his family. May his soul RIP.”
It was reported in the Ghanaian media that some football gurus led by Mr. Kodjo Fianoo as well as some executives of the PFAG visited him at the hospital on Monday.But unfortunately he was pronounced dead on Tuesday morning.
Abubakar played in the qualifiers as Ghana reached their first World Cup. He also started every game as the Black Stars exited in the group stage of the 2006 Africa Cup of Nations loosing to Nigeria and Zimbabwe but only been able to beat Senegal.
However, he was overlooked for the final squad for the tournament in Germany.
At club level, Abubakar – who could also play in defence – left Ghana at the age of 17 to join former European champions Ajax Amsterdam.
He won two league championships, in 2002 and 2004, as well as the 2002 Dutch Cup.
In the 2002-03 season, he played five times in the European Champions League as Ajax reached the quarter-finals before bowing out against eventual winners Milan.
After 89 appearances for Ajax, Abubakar joined another Dutch side, Vitesse Arnhem, in 2004, staying with the club for five years.
Abubakar played for Ghana at every level, having represented his nation at Under-17, Under-20 and Under-23 level as well.