Togo pay tribute to striker Koudagba after unexpected death

The Togolese Federation have paid a poignant tribute to the international forward, who passed away on Thursday

The Togolese Football Federation have paid tribute to ASC Kara striker Kossi Edem Koudagba following his death at the age of 24 on Thursday.

The striker, who netted against Nigeria at the 2019 Wafu Cup of Nations, died in his hometown of Davie following a short illness.

“In these painful circumstances, the Executive Committee of the FTF wish to salute the memory of the player, whose qualities on and off the field are known to all,” a communique from the federation began.

“The FTF Executive Committee would like, on behalf of Togolese football, to express our deepest condolences and express our feelings of sympathy to the family of the deceased, loved ones, the ASCK club, as well as the staff and players of the Togo national team.”

Koudagba’s death was announced on Thursday, with the young forward having returned to his family home earlier in the week.

The striker was named in Claude Le Roy’s senior national side for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Algeria in 2018, and was a key figure of the home-based national side.

He was one of their key figures at the Wafu Cup, opening the scoring against Nigeria in the Sparrowhawks’ 2-1 victory, but was unable to prevent Togo’s quarter-final elimination at the hands of the Ivory Coast.

Togo were eliminated on penalties following a 0-0 draw.

The striker had also represented the West Africans in the African Nations Championship qualifying double-head against Nigeria, which Togo won to book their ticket to the Chan tournament in Cameroon.

Ultimately, Les Eperviers weren’t able to take part in the tournament—originally scheduled to take place in April—due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The 2018 Togo top scorer was twice a Togolese champion with Club Sportive des Chauffeurs de la Kozak, and was part of the team that were defeated by Enugu Rangers in the Caf Confederation Cup earlier this year.

ASCK were recently awarded this year’s Togolese title again, following the domestic top flight’s suspension and subsequent cancellation in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

While there has been speculation on social media that Covid-19 was the cause of Koudagba’s passing, the virus has not been named as the reason for his death by either his family or his club.

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