Reports coming in from China indicate that former Newcastle and Ivory Coast midfielder CHEICK TIOTE has died aged 30 after collapsing during training this afternoon.
The former defensive midfield star was playing for Chinese second-tier side Beijing Enterprises and was taken ill after collapsing in training the reports say. He was pronounced dead after he shortly arrived at the hospital
A spokesman for the player confirmed he enterprising midfielder had indeed died with Enterprises yet to make an official statement on Tiote’s health.
“It is with deep sadness that I confirm that my client Cheick Tiote sadly passed away earlier today after collapsing in training with his club Beijing Enterprises.
“We cannot say any more at the moment and we request that his family’s privacy be respected at this difficult time. “We ask for all your prayers.” Emanuele Palladino said is quoted to have said.
Tiote’s former team-mate at Newcastle, Demba Ba, is among the first to react after receiving the news and tweeted: “may Allah gives grant you jannah brother Tiote.” He included six crying emojis in his post.
The defensive midfielder secured a £3.5million switch to Newcastle in 2010 and his sole and most memorable goal in the premier league for the magpies being the equaliser in a 4-4 draw with Arsenal in February 2011.
His last game for the Toon was in a 3-1 win over Birmingham in January. More details to follow.