Iraqi football legend Ahmed Radhi dies at 56

Iraqi football legend Ahmed Radhi dies at 56

Iraqi football legend Ahmed Radhi has died of COVID-19, the highly infectious respiratory disease caused by the new coronavirus. 

While disclosing this on Sunday June 21, 2020, the Iraqi health ministry said that Radhi, 56, was hospitalised last week in Baghdad after testing positive for the virus but checked out on Thursday after his condition improved.

"He relapsed a few hours later and was readmitted to the hospital. He died early on Sunday," the health ministry said. 

Iraqis joined a funeral procession to honour the former footballer in the Iraqi capital on Sunday morning. 

In video footage released on local media outlets, dozens of men were seen around an ambulance, chanting "There is no God but Allah" in Arabic. 

Others were seen weeping in sadness as they walked alongside the vehicle shortly before his body was laid to rest.

In another video on Saturday, Radhi could be seen in a green jersey struggling to breathe as medics in full protective gear try to treat him.

"Sometimes it's hard to breathe but that's normal," he could be heard telling the medical team, his voice strained.

"Ahmed Radhi passed away wearing the green jersey, which he loved so much that we loved him in it," said Iraqi premier Mustafa al-Kadhemi.