Missing Ivory Coast defender found dead in river

Former Premier League footballer Steve Gohouri has been found dead in a river in Germany.

The 34-year-old, who played defence for Wigan Athletic between 2010 and 2012, was reported missing two weeks ago.

Gohouri attended his current fourth division German side TSV Steinbach’s Christmas party on December 11 and was due to travel to see his family in Paris.

When he failed to turn up his loved ones filed a missing persons report and a police appeal for his whereabouts was issued.

German police confirmed today his body had been found in the River Rhine, with no indication of violence or foul play.

The body was recovered on New Year’s Eve in Krefeld, to the north-west of Dusseldorf, which was subsequently identified as Gohouri.

Tributes have been paid to the player online and on social media, including one from his former UK side.

The official Wigan Athletic Twitter feed posted a message earlier today that read: “We are saddened to hear reports of our former defender Steve Gohouri passing away. Our thoughts are with his family.”

Former team mate and Wigan manager Gary Caldwell, whose side now play in the third tier of English football, expressed his sadness.

“I heard the fans singing his name and we heard about the news in the dressing room,” he said after a 1-1 draw at Scunthorpe United.

“For somebody so young to lose their life is very sad, it’s tragic to find out about a former team mate passing away.”

A statement from TSV Steinbach read: “TSV Steinbach football club mourns its player Steve Gohouri.

“It is this afternoon certain that Steve Gohouri has died at the age of 34 years. This was confirmed by the Dusseldorf Police to TSV Steinbach.

“All managers, players, coaches and assistants at TSV Steinbach are very concerned about the death of Steve Gohouri. Our thoughts in these difficult hours are with his family.”


The Rhine river


Dusseldorf Police confirmed there were no suspicious circumstances surrounding the events of Gohouri’s death.

A statement read: “On December 31, the corpse of initially an unknown man was found in the Rhine near Krefeld.

“In the meantime, the dead could be identified as the 34-year-old who had been reported missing on December 12. An autopsy showed no evidence of violence by third parties.”

Gohouri was born on the Ivory Coast, but moved to France as a young boy and grew up in Paris.

He was in the youth system at Paris St Germain, joined Wigan from Borussia Monchengladbach in January 2010, going on to make 42 appearances for the Latics during their spell in the Barclays Premier League.

The defender, part of the Ivory Coast 2010 World Cup squad, joined Maccabi Tel Aviv in the summer of 2012, and also had a spell at Skoda Xanthi in Greece before looking to finish his playing career in Germany.

Gohouri played for his national Ivory Coast side in 2006, scoring three goal during his appearances.

Credit: Mirror.co.uk

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