Former Green Eagles star, Yisa Sofoluwe, has died at the age of 57 at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital following brain-related issues.
The former Shooting Stars Sports Club (3SC) defender passed away on Tuesday, February 9, 2021, at about 9:30 pm.
He won 40 caps and scored one goal for the country. Between 1983 and 88, he was a regular left-back, playing at the 1984 and 1988 African Nations Cups.
One of his close allies, Waidi Akanni commended the first Vice President of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Barrister Seyi Akinwunmi, Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare and Lagos State Government, Mr Sanwo Olu for their prompt financial response towards saving his life.
Paying tribute on Wednesday, the Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, said Yisa Sofoluwe was somebody who came before his time.
Dare, in a statement issued by his Media Office, said he was deeply shocked and sad to learn of Sofoluwe’s demise, especially as he died when help was on its way.
“The news of Sofoluwe’s death is quite devastating and one that hit me like a tornado. He was a great, committed, disciplined, humble and patriotic player.
“He came ahead of his time. No wonder he was nicknamed `the Dean of Defence’ by ace commentator Ernest Okonkwo.
“He died just when help was on the way for him to pay for his surgery. But his death is a huge loss. Rest in peace `Dean of Defence’,” the minister said.
The minister had last week sent some undisclosed amount of money to one of Sofoluwe’s ex-teammates to pay part of his hospital bills.
Plans were also on to get the Lagos State Government to pay for his surgery.