TRIBUTES have poured in following the death of ex-Worcester City and Birmingham City defender Sam Oji at the age of 35.

Messages of condlence started circulating on social media on Friday morning but the club where he was player-assisant manager, City's league rivals Highgate United, revealed on Friday night that he was still fighting for his life and asked for his family's privacy to be respected. 

The club confirmed this morning that he had died. 

The former Arsenal academy prospect played in the Football League for Doncaster Rovers, Bristol Rovers, Leyton Orient and Hereford United.

After three seasons in Ireland playing for Limerick and Galway United, Oji returned to England to sign for City in the summer of 2016. He left when City dropped down from National North to the Midland Football League a year later.

After spending time as a player with City’s league rivals Highgate United, Oji was appointed as assistant manager to new boss Simon Johnson this summer.

It is understood Oji passed away following a short illness that was not related to Covid. 

Worcester City captain and player-coach Craig Jones was among those to pay tribute.