Former Nigerian striker Akeem Omolade has passed away in Italy.
He was found dead inside a car in Palermo.
Omolade, who was born in Kaduna State, the former political capital of Northern Nigeria, arrived in Italy at the age of 17, joining Treviso, with whom he made his professional debut in Serie B. He subsequently joined Torino, with whom he made his Serie A debut.
Following his departure from Torino, he went on to play in the lower leagues of Italian football. In 2011, he moved to Sicily to join Mazara. In 2012, he played for Ribera 1954 in Serie D, before returning to Mazara in 2013.
In 2014, he went down even further, joining Marsala-based Promozione club Borgata Terrenove. Last season he played with Altofonte in the first Sicilian category.
In 2001, his name became famous when he wore the Treviso shirt. At the time, about 30 Venetian ultras – not new to acts of discrimination – withdrew their banners and left the stadium protesting his signing because they did not like the colour of his skin.
However, the following day, when Treviso were coming up against Genoa in a league fixture, the players of Treviso including their coach and the entire technical bench, entered the field with their faces painted black, as a sign of solidarity.