Former Cameroon captain Théophile Abega has died at the age of 58, the Cameroon Football Federation announced on Thursday.
Abega skippered Cameroon to their first African Nations Cup title in 1984, when he scored in a 3-1 win over Nigeria in the final in Abidjan, the capital of the Ivory Coast.
The former midfielder was named African Footballer of the Year in the same year, while two years earlier he played in all three of Cameroon’s matches at the 1982 World Cup finals in Spain.
He spent the majority of his playing career at Canon Yaounde and contributed to two triumphs in the African Champions Cup in 1978 and 1980 and the African Cup Winners’ Cup in 1979. He was later the club’s president.
Abega later played at Toulouse in France and Vevey Sport in Switzerland, before retiring at the age of 33. He served as mayor of a district in Yaounde for four years.
A statement on the Cameroon Football Federation’s website did not reveal the cause of death but reports in Cameroon said Abega had suffered a cardiac arrest.