The football world yet again on Monday had been shocked to news of another footballer collapsing & unfortunately dying while playing the game they loved.
Ivorian and Beijing Enterprises midfielder Cheick Tiote has died after being rushed to hospital.The 30 year old died after collapsing during training in China after suffering a heart attack.
According to Wikipedia search 138 footballers have died while playing a game, died directly from injuries sustained while playing, or died after being taken ill on the pitch.
Following an increase in deaths, both during matches and training, (Federation of International Football Associations) considered mandatory cardiac testing, already in place for years in some countries, such as Italy.
30 out of the 137 footballers are from the African continent .But further research indicates most of African players death are not were documented.
Cardiac arrest has caused a number of fatalities among footballers and in recent years it has been noted that players with sub-Saharan African backgrounds seem to have been afflicted in unusually high proportions.
Several Africans, in turn, have had heart irregularities diagnosed during their careers, often alerted to them when they join European clubs.
The former Nigeria captain Kanu had already won an Olympic gold medal and the European Cup with Ajax of Amsterdam when, on signing for Inter Milan, doctors found a faulty aortic valve in his heart. An operation in America ensured he went on to a long and fulfilling career.
The Ivorian players Adama Niambele and Yussouf Kone both failed medicals with Italian Serie A clubs because they were found to have “enlarged hearts” that would potentially put them at risk.
The heart condition with which the Senegalese winger Khalilou Fadiga competed with distinction for several seasons at Auxerre in France and at the 2002 World Cup with his country was slightly different.
On joining Inter, their medical staff detected an irregular heartbeat and advised him to give up his career. Fadiga persisted with it, but after suffering a collapse while with Bolton, had a defibrillator fitted. Such cases are not uniquely African.
Fifa-backed medical research team focused specifically on heart risk among the players at the 2009 African Under 17 championship in Algeria, the team of academics involved found that “black African athletes seem to have an increased risk of adverse cardiac events during sports events,”he told the thenational.
They recommended improved screening procedures and awareness that, while sub-Saharan Africa may produce more than its share of talented athletes, a small but slightly higher than average proportion of them may be vulnerable.
In an exclusive interview with FIFA ,CAF and GFA renowned Sports Exercise Physician Dr Prince Pambo he affirmed that the situation of rampant African Footballers death is due to lack of Proper Medical screening of athletes from their young age and also lack of medical facilities at Sports centers .
An average black person has a higher chance than any other race to experience Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) and at a much earlier age, according to research published by the American Heart Association. 175 Black men and 90 Black women per 100,000 people go through sudden cardiac arrest, in comparison to 84 White men and 40 White women per 100,000 people.
“Yes is true African players die the most, “he told sportsworldghana.com
“The white does hearts screening for potential athletes at a tender age of 12 , so those with hearts problems are advice to desist from sports but in our case as African is not .”
“So a person grows up as a sports man or women to the professional level without knowing if he is prone to cardiac disease.”
“We African have genetics disadvantages,so we need to train more medical personals and also have facilities like Ambulance ,CPR machine at Stadiums.”
“In Germany there encourage people with heart problem to do sports so there always provide medical facilities to safe guard occurrences.”
Dr Prince Pambo a member of the GFA medical team helped save Accra Great Olympics’ skipper Francis Mantey who collapsed midway into the second half game against Great Olympics and Asante Kotoko in Week 18 of the Ghana Premier league league clash.
Dr Pambo, had attended the match as a mere fan, just like Dr Deaner at the White Hart Lane did the greatest miracle in football history was written by saving Fabrice Muamba who “in effect died” for 78 minutes following the collapse.
“My biggest worry is that recommendation made are not effectively implemented by CAF and the GFA”
Black/African Footballers that have died suffering Cardiac Arrests while playing :
– Cheick Tiote(Ivory Coast)
– Samuel Okwaraji (Nigeria)
– Amir Angwe (Nigeria)
– Hedi Berkhissa (Tunisia)
– John Ikoroma (Nigeria)
– Bobsam Elejiko (Nigeria)
– Endurance Idahor (Nigeria)
– Chinonso Ihelwere Henry (Nigeria)
– Victor Omogbehin (England)
– Marc-Viven Foe (Cameroon)
– Mohammed Abdelwahab (Egypt)
– Chaswe Nsofwa (Nigeria)
– Guy Tchingoma (Gabon)
– Orobosan Adun (Nigeria)
– Sekou Camara (Mali)
–Shetemi Ayetigbo (Ireland)
– David Oniya (Nigeria)
– Kodjo Etonam Adjassou (Togo)
– Benjamin Owusu (Ghana)
– Mohamed Lemine M’Boye (Tanzania)
– Ambrose Wleh (Liberia)
– Patrick Ekeng (Cameroon)
-Yannick Dago(Ivory Coast)
-Emmanuel Ogoli (Nigerian)
-Moïse Brou Apanga(Gabon)
-Ben Idrissa Dermé( Burkina Faso)
-Jeanine Christelle Djomnang(Cameroon)
-Gofaone Tiro (Motswana )
These are players who’s deaths were documented and there is a greater chance that many more African & black players have suffered from cardiac arrest related deaths while playing football.