Tijani Babangida: Former Ajax star who scored at 1998 World Cup survives horror crash as brother dies

Tijani Babangida's brother has tragicallly died in an horrific car crashTijani Babangida's brother has tragicallly died in an horrific car crash
Tijani Babangida's brother has tragicallly died in an horrific car crash | Getty Images
Tijani Babangida was part of the Nigeria squad which competed in the 1998 World Cup, while his late brother won the tournament at U17 level

Former Nigeria and Ajax winger Tijani Babangida is mourning the death of his brother Ibrahima, who died in a tragic car accident on Thursday 9 May. Tijani and his brother were both involved in a traffic collision on the Zaria-Kaduna Road in Nigeria. 

Tijani is believed to be in a serious but stable condition in the medical facility alongside his wife, son, and a family employee, but his brother Ibrahima died instantly after the crash.

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Tijani Babangida rose to prominence during the 1990s as a winger for Roda JC in the Dutch Erdevisie. His form over the course of five seasons earned him a move to Ajax where he is remembered for playing in the Champions League and notably winning the league title.

The 50-year-old, who was part of Nigeria’s gold medal winning team in the 1996 Olympics, made 36 appearances for the national team and represented them in three major tournaments including the 1998 World Cup, where he scored in a 4-1 win over Denmark.  He became a football agent after retirement in 2004 and has led the Professional Football's Association of Nigeria, where he has served as president. 

Meanwhile, his younger brother Ibrahim also played professionally during the 1990s for fellow Dutch side FC Volendam. He never represented his country at senior level, but was an integral part of the squad which won the U17 World Cup.

Emmanuel Babayaro, the general secretary of PFAN, announced the tragedy on social media.

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His statement reads: “Comrades! Let us pray for our president, Tijani Babangida, who has just been involved in a terrible car accident on the Kaduna-Zaria Eoad road.

“Ibrahim Babangida, his younger brother, died on the spot from the accident while Mr President and his family were taken to hospital. 

“May the soul of Ibrahim Babangida rest in peace with God, amen.

“The accident happened on Thursday afternoon, and (Tijani's) wife was also involved in it.

“He is currently admitted at Shika hospital in Zaria, where he is receiving treatment.

“To the glory of God, he is conscious.”

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