Gyan, who played for Dutch sides Feyenoord and Excelsior, was battling a terminal illness before his demise.
‘You were there for me’ – Van Persie pays tribute to late Ghana defender Christian Gyan
Former Arsenal and Manchester United striker Robin van Persie has paid tribute to Ghana’s Christian Gyan, who died on Tuesday.
The ex-Ghana defender enjoyed a hugely successful football career that lasted almost a decade and a half in Europe.
He started his career at Gapoha before joining Feyenoord in 1996, where he rose to become a cult hero among the fans.
At Feyenoord, he played together with Van Persie, with the pair winning the UEFA Cup, KNVB Cup and Johan Cruyff Shield together.
Tributes have poured in from far and near following the death of Gyan and Van Persie has also paid homage to the late former footballer.
“A beautiful soul is never forgotten,” the former Netherlands international wrote on his official Twitter handle.
“You were there for me in the early days of my career and supported me like a big brother. I will forever be thankful for those memories. Rest in peace Christian.”
Gyan went through a difficult period after his retirement in 2010 and was open about his illness and financial struggles.
He later secured a job at the port of Rotterdam thanks to the help of a Feyenoord sponsor, while the club’s fans also raised funds for him.
In a previous interview with AD Sportwereld 10 years ago, Gyan disclosed how well the fans of Feyenoord treated him when he worked at the port.
"Almost all people who work in the ports of Rotterdam are Feyenoord supporters. They sometimes take a picture with me,” he said, as quoted by the Graphic Sports.
“We talk a lot about the time. I still played in De Kuip I know that what I experienced is something that people dream of all their lives I stood on the field in a sold-out De Kuip I won prizes with a great club No one is too big for the harbor, why would I be? Because I was a footballer? That's just a job."
Gyan is said to have battled with seizures which forced him to quit working at the port after his retirement.
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