Tributes pour in for late Sierra Leone goalkeeper


The tributes poured in for late Sierra Leone goalkeeper Alhaji Dauda Conteh, who passed away from a short illness in hospital in Freetown on Sunday.

The 25-year-old Conteh played for Guinean side Ashanti Golden Boys de Siguiri and featured in many Sierra Leone squads, but never made his international debut.

Conteh was last picked for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Kenya last month, but was replaced the night before the match due to health reasons.

"Conteh was not impressive in the last day of training because something was wrong with him," Sierra Leone coach John Keister told BBC Sport.

"I even told one of my assistants about it. This forced me to drop him from the squad. We'll surely miss him. I always liked him because he was humble and always good to be around the Leone Stars team.

"He was a clever boy and had a goalkeeper's height and good goalkeeping abilities," Keister added.

Some of Sierra Leone's biggest international stars have also been paying tribute to their teammate, who played for three Premier league clubs in Sierra Leone -- East End Lions, Kallon FC and Diamond Stars of Kono -- as well as Fello Star de Labè and Ashanti Golden Boys de Siguiri in Guinea.

"It's very sad to wake up and hear news like this," said former Norwich City and Middlesbrough striker Kei Kamara. "Alhaji was such a great person; being a college graduate and a footballer is a hard thing to do and he was able to accomplish that. My prayers to his family."

Leone Stars skipper Umaru Bangura was shocked to hear the news of Conteh's death. "We've lost a good goalkeeper. We were with him in camp last month when preparing for our match against Kenya. We'll miss him. Rest in peace Conteh," said Bangura.

Conteh, who obtained a degree from Fourah Bay College at the University of Sierra Leone, is yet to be buried.