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World News

Former Premier League footballer and churchgoer Christian Atsu to be buried today

by Premier Journalist

Prominent football-player and church-going believer, Christian Atsu, is to be buried today in his native Ghana, after being killed when an earthquake hit Turkey.

Atsu was found dead after the earthquake caused the collapse of his apartment in the south of the country.

The former Newcastle United and Everton player had been playing for Turkish Super Lig side Hatayspor.

The funeral will take place in the Ghanaian capital, Accra, under state-supervision.

Mourners and well-wishers from Ghana and abroad are expected to file in their thousands past the body to pay their last respects.

The 31-year-old was a devout Christian and would often use his high profile to share his faith. He used to attend Hillsong Church Newcastle during his time as a Premier League player.

In 2018, he told Ghana Sports he became a Christian at the age of 16 and had since tried to “imitate the life that Jesus Christ was living”.

He said: “Sometimes I would complain to God a lot. Sometimes, ‘why should I suffer like this? Why should some people have it easy?’ When I was growing up, I would read the Bible, trying to understand everything. Why? Why? Why?’

“Then I realised that I was complaining too much. God’s power has to be manifested in my life for people to see how far he has brought me. The Bible says it is not by our hard work. For example, like me – it is not just by my hard work, though I am working hard, but it is the will of God, the grace of God, that has brought me this far.”

The winger also played 65 times for Ghana's national team and helped his side reach the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations final.

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