Former Marseille president Pape Diouf has died at the age of 68 after contracting the new coronavirus, a family source told AFP on Tuesday.
Diouf led the club between 2005-2009 and helped build the side who lifted the Ligue 1 title in 2010.
He was hospitalised in Senegal after contracting the virus there and became the country’s first COVID-19 fatality.
Diouf had been due to leave for Nice earlier on Tuesday to be treated in France, but a sharp deterioration in his health — which saw him placed on a respirator — prevented him from boarding the plane.
Diouf was also a journalist and football agent before taking over at the Stade Velodrome.
He later became president at Marseille, “a difficult post, where there were very few men from diverse backgrounds,” said Jacques-Henri Eyraud, the club’s current president.
Senegal President Macky Sall also paid tribute to “a great figure of sport” on Twitter.
“To his family, I offer, on behalf of the nation, my deepest condolences.”