Cameroonians remember Foe as they exit Russia tourney
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Cameroonians remember Foe as they exit Russia tourney

Posted NDI EUGENE NDI in Yaoundé

on  Monday, June 26   2017 at  18:49

Cameroon Monday marked 14 years since the death of the Indomitable Lions player Marc Vivien Foe.

The anniversary came only a day after the African soccer champions were knocked out of the Confederations Cup soccer tournament in Russia, thanks to a 3-1 loss to Germany.

After a disappointing 2-0 defeat to Chile in their opening game, the African champions grabbed their lone point of the global tournament following a 1-1 with Australia, but failed to secure a semi-final ticket after going down to world champions Germany in their last group game on Sunday.

Considered one of the continent’s finest midfielders, Marco as the 17-shirt player was fondly called, collapsed on the field during a Confederations Cup semi-final match between Cameroon and Colombia on June 26, 2003 and later died in France while defending his national colours, leaving the global football community in shock.

A first autopsy failed to establish the cause of the 28-year-old's death, but a second found he had been suffering from a condition called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

The Indomitable Lions were playing in the Confederations Cup this year for the first time since Foe’s shocking demise.

Foe 'was present' in Cameroon’s finest hour when they won their 5th continental title in Gabon earlier this year. A specially designed Lions jerseys, all bearing No. 17, were handy and the team members wore them immediately after they emerged champions as they enjoyed their title celebration and Confederations Cup ticket.

Foe had made 62 appearances with the Cameroon national team, scoring eight goals in 10 years. He was part of the squad that won the last African Cup of Nations (Afcon) crown in 2002 and also featured in the South Korea and Japan World Cup squad of same year.

Though no official event was organised in the country to mark 14 years of the demise of the soccer hero, former clubs, teammates and fans flooded the social media with tributes.

“Today we remember former Hammer, Marc-Vivien Foé, on the anniversary of his sad passing. Rest in Peace,” his former club, West Ham United‏ for which he made 38 appearances, twitted.

Foe left behind a widow and sons aged six and three, as well as a daughter of only two months old.

The player's generosity had been legendary, and there were reports that he dis not leave much money behind.